Chris responded with a simple and straightforward proposal – to photograph people of St Marys.
Faces of St Marys was born and gradually developed during 10 intensive weeks in an improvised photographic studio at St Marys Corner. The studio was the place where people would visit, sit and share their stories. St Marys residents from all walks of life were asked the same questions: What does Queen Street mean to you? What is its importance and character? What are the personal and collective memories connected to the street? What is Queen Street going to look like in the future?
The studio also expanded to Queen Street itself where a simple white backdrop, 1967 Hasselblad 500C camera and a passion to meet people and have conversations resulted in additional Faces of St Marys images. An exciting part of Faces of St Marys was Chris’ mentoring of four TAFE Arts and Design students.
Barbara Glover, Kira Ogston, Sevket Ufuk Guden and Yvonne Larkins, currently enrolled in Photo Imaging courses, also captured the life and culture of the street, searching for what a street photographer would call a “decisive moment”. After taking several hundred photographs, 24 striking images have been selected for this exhibition.
The people of St Marys of different ages and diverse cultures have came together as part of this project by sharing common experiences and memories of Queen Street. Through their participation in the Faces of St Marys, Queen Street Riches and Textures 2013 has captivated a collage of photographs and stories of a distinctive suburb and its people.