Diarmuid McDonald

https://www.instagram.com/dmcdonald_photo/?hl=en

I am photographer and writer based in Nottingham. My work is often personal and self-exploratory, blending original photography and writing alongside archival materials. In 2016, I completed my MA in Photojournalism & Documentary Photography from London College of Communication.   My project No Further East is an exploration of memory and loss, both that of my mother and of the socio-economic fortunes of the seaside town of Lowestoft. In 1993 my mother died of ovarian cancer, I was too young to have formed any memories of her and my family moved away from Lowestoft in the late 1990’s. Like many seaside towns across the UK, Lowestoft has experienced a steady decay since the 1980’s, with much of it’s core industries such as fishing and domestic tourism in decline. Even during peak summer season, Lowestoft and the surrounding areas feel empty; the beaches seemingly visited only by locals, and the town populated with the ruins of it’s former industries.  I spent time in Lowestoft exploring the town of my early childhood. Inspired by the writings of W. G. Sebald, who twenty years earlier passed through Lowestoft on a walking tour of the Norfolk and Suffolk coastline, I wandered through the town and the surrounding areas, exploring the ruins of factories and holiday resorts. I tracked down and met with family friends who shared their stories and memories of my mother. Some showed me pictures, others video footage in which for the first time I witnessed my mother’s body animated and living. I prepared an extensive shot list of what I planned to photograph, which I quickly discarded in favour of taking photographs only when I felt compelled to do so.   No Further East consists of my own square photographs alongside old family photos from during and before my early childhood, showing my mother at play with myself or my brothers. Alongside these images are a series of scanned texts, written by myself.  I seek to explore my own loss alongside that of the town, photographing places that my mother perhaps may have been and imaging the insistence of her lost future which never came to be.

Venue- Backlit

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