Record “Contrast”

…was the task given to us for our second studio session with Susannah Rees and Dominic Dyson (Andrew made a joke asking us not to ask if he works for ‘Dyson’, the people that make those new-age bionic vacuums etc., hahaha!). Our first studio on Tuesday October 4 was with Marit Muenzberg and Alistair McClymont.

We set out in groups, and were free to explore areas inside or outside LCC. We were tasked with recording down observations of anything we could see that meant “contrast” to us, in any shape or form. We could record sounds, do rubbings off of reliefs, or simply photograph or sketch down things. I was so ready to take on this class! Finally we got to do some *actual* work.

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My group of 4 decided to walk around Elephant & Castle. We walked past the Shopping Centre and went behind the railway tracks to the small lane of shops just beneath the tracks.

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We noticed that there was a lot of redevelopment and renovation work going on in the area. One group mate, Oli, pointed out the tension he feels being in this neighbourhood. The tension being the regeneration going on in this place. It was different from many areas in London. You can really observe the “old” and “new” elements of this neighbourhood, and see some old establishments closed, and some renewing.

Above is a photo I took of tree branches and the cranes in the background. I felt these two subjects contrasted each other because they are similar in form, but one is natural and permanent, the other man-made and temporary.

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Another photo describing contrast is this one above. On the right is an apartment block with a modular façade, and the one on the left is a building being renovated, with it’s façade covered by a large cover that has a fake façade printed on it, seemingly to hide the fact that the building is undergoing renewal work.

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I noticed the different ‘S’ letterforms in the signs for “Shopping Centre” and “Superbowl”, and so I recorded that down as a display of typographic contrast in close proximity below. I also noticed different ‘E’s’ in another sign nearby.

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Ripe and unripe bananas…or plantains maybe?

Going back to the studio, in our groups we had to express our findings in a composition. My group decided to repeat the headline “SAVE THE CORONET” in 4 different posters because we felt that the headline alludes to the tension we felt in the area, which meant contracts to us—contrast between the old & new, and contrast between regeneration and gentrification in E&C versus other areas of London in general; what is permanent and temporary. We took inspiration from the Coronet Theatre we saw nearby the Shopping Centre; it was closed but applying for a new license to reopen.

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Contrast: Recognise tension between things; can be similar and have a common theme but are somewhat at odds with each other—lines, temporary versus permanent.

That’s what I jotted down for what contrast meant to me in this context.

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