THE ROAD BEYOND THE RIVER
During my time spent by the King Harry Ferry I was able to capture much of the activity and routine surrounding the running and working of the Ferry; where passengers become an indistinguishable blur within the working ferryman’s day. Whilst this was an integral part of my interest, I was also keen to further explore the individual view of the passenger and the Relationship they formed with the Ferry as a means to further access the South West. I wanted to understand the relationship between Ferry and passenger, between Journey and passenger, and between Destination and passenger.
As part of the approach I took to understanding more about the visitor (tourist)’s transient experience of the King Harry Ferry and surrounding area, I nurtured a body of work that dealt with the passengers’ journey after disembarking from the ferry itself. I wanted to explore, through visual/photographic documentation, the route each passenger took to their chosen destination. I soon realised that my own efforts to document the passengers fleeting experience on the ferry weren’t enough, and that I needed to somehow escape the path of repetition I was beginning to experience through the perpetual rhythms of the ferryman’s day. I wanted to be able to reach out, crane my neck and catch a glimpse of the roads and journeys that lay ahead of each individual passenger. To do that I knew I would have to reach out to the passengers themselves, and involve them in my experience as an artist working by the ferry, and invite them to participate in documenting ‘The Road Beyond the River’.
Passengers willing to take part in the project where given a 24 exposure 35mm disposable film camera to take away with them and use to record their path onwards after disembarking from the King Harry Ferry. After which they were encouraged to send the exposed films back to me, along with any written accounts of their experience of participating in the documentary process.
The response I got was truly wonderful, and the images I received back where testament to the fact that although we may all share the same starting point, there is no end to the differences in which we as individuals view and experience a journey.
Sample of images from the collection of 35mm films I received back from passengers of the King Harry Ferry.