Electricians' lives spark photographic exhibition

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Electricians' lives spark photographic exhibition

A trawl through family history to find clues to unknown relatives is the inspiration for The Electrician – a new exhibition opening at the Corinium Museum, Cirencester, on January 20.

The temporary exhibition, by photographer Kathryn Smith, is a series of pictures she took when trying to gain an insight into the lives of her father and grandfather.

Both men were electricians and Kathryn has built on this piece of knowledge to produce a visual archive of clothing and objects related to the trade, with the help of local electrical firms who loaned the items she photographed.

Kathryn, who is from Bristol and has an MA in Documentary Photography from the University of Wales, Newport, began her quest after finding some old family photographs prompted her to research her family tree.

The result is a fascinating piece of 20th Century history that also features photographs from Kathryn's family archive.

Kathryn said: "Many of us are driven to look into the past and trace family ancestors to redefine our histories and ourselves."

"The project was similar to putting together an incomplete jigsaw puzzle. All I really knew about my father and grandfather is that they were electricians. I think people of my father’s generation were defined by the jobs they did – and the clothes and objects personalise a possible identity."

The Electrician runs until March 5. Entrance is included in the price of museum admission or visitors may pay £1 to see the exhibition only.

Posted : 16/01/2006 13:35:24

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