Visualising the migrant’s experience : one woman’s story

Fairclough, CM 2013, Visualising the migrant’s experience : one woman’s story , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

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I am a photographer/artist of Turkish origin who has worked with migrants from Turkey as an interpreter. Affected by the social and emotional isolation experienced by many of the women I came across, I wanted to document their experience. Recognising the limitations of my previous visual style, I sought to develop photographic practices that would do justice to the experience of these women. My central research question therefore focuses on the extent to which an artist can develop a new artistic vision and sensibility and move beyond the conventions and limitations of social documentary photography by drawing on the research methodologies of social science. The main output from the research is a portfolio of visual work that aims to enhance understanding of the migrant community from Turkey in UK.

During the course of the fieldwork I focused on the ‘life story’ of one asylum seeker from Turkey. I spent three years as a participant/observer for this research, documenting through photography her daily life, including the major changes and upheavals. I drew on the practices of visual sociology, including photo-elicitation. My research highlights the potential value to an artist of drawing on the methodologies of social science. I use these methodologies not only to develop a deeper understanding of the subject but also to develop photographic practices that enable me to provide insights into the migrant experience. I illustrate how my photographic style has developed during the course of the research and how I have addressed some of the issues inherent in contemporary social documentary photography.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media
Depositing User: USIR Admin
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2019 10:09
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 21:28

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