I am Martin Slavin and have lived in Hackney for 29 years (by October 2014). During most of that time I have worked with social documentary photography in journalism. Since early 2005 I have been living within 1km of the Olympic site. This has allowed me a close up view of the many changes which are occurring during the transformation of my locality. I have set up this blog site to publish online photographs I have taken of some of these moments. I am a member of the local group Games Monitor whose members comment upon the politics of these changes.
Some of my photos are to be found on the Pages listed to the right.
Pictures are ambiguous, and words are slippery. Their combination, posing as ‘documentary’, is here constructed from a multitude of fragments into a useful discourse. What I am attempting here is other than narrative. It does not have a beginning, a middle and an end. More like a loosely structured cluster of pictures, commentary, quotations and links which express my thoughts about the London Olympics being used as a political agent for the leveraging of redevelopment funding into an area of London suffering from capital flight followed by decades of underinvestment. Nor is it meant to be a comprehensive coverage of this mega-event in its context. That was never a realistic possibility. However I believe that most parts contain many characteristics of the whole.
I chose this format because I wanted to publish this work on a free platform that would allow me to use a lot of pictures taken over eight years and allow viewers to have free access to them here. The result is a rather inflexible straitjacket. These free Word Press formats I find hard work to wrangle towards something where I get it to look the way I want. If I had lot more time and a little more money I could probably find something more elegant. Better typography certainly.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
The processes of local urbanisation, from which I have selected moments, are ongoing. I intend to continue adding more moments and reflections to what is already here. I expect my mental images to change somewhat as my comprehension evolves. I am also going to change the format of presentation. This is very much my first version of this work.
When I embarked on this project eight years ago, little did I realise what an epic it would become. Part of my research into the subject can now be found among my contributions to Games Monitor.