Foto Arte 2007 Brasilia

I suppose it’s nice to know the name of the condition you suffer from. One of mine is hodophobia, the morbid fear of travelling, although sometimes restricted to road travel, for me it it is at its worst in airport lounges, check ins and the like, surely a potent image of hell on earth, especially under our current paranoia about terrorism.

I don’t have any fear of actual flying – at least not so long as its inside an aeroplane. Even when I fell down a mountain in my youth, I don’t think I felt fear as I saw the earth whirling around below me, though perhaps I just didn’t have time as my second or two of free-fall ended in a very abrupt stop on one of the few small patches of springy grass around, cushioned by the full rucksack on my back.

Because it’s the waiting that is worst, giving time for worrying, and yes, I could worry for England. Or rather Britain, as it’s our embassy that has put up the money and arranged my last-minute trip to Brazil for Foto Arte 2007, where I’ll be showing work and talking about photography and the environment.

No third runway at Heathrow, Harmondsworth, June 2003

It’s a visit that is not without contradictions. Like flying rather a long distance to talk about the need to cut air travel – and two of the pictures are about the opposition to yet more expansion at Heathrow. And the whole thing being supported by the government that I’m going to criticize in various ways. Actually not just the current government but the whole system.

West Thurrock
Thames Gateway:West Thurrock

Much of my talk will actually be about urban landscape photography and will include material from the urban landscape web site I run with Mike Seaborne, looking at how photography can record and also comment on our environment. But the pictures – and the rest of my talk – are about environmental protests in London.

The pictures are already there, having taken the easy route over the Internet as high res jpeg files. They are almost all somewhere on My London Diary – but with around 25,000 other images, so I’ll put the set of 24 images together on-line so those of you who can’t make it to Brasilia can see them. (For copyright reasons I can’t put all of my talk online.)

PCF, Paris
PCF HQ, Paris

I’m looking forward to seeing Brasilia, and more of the buildings of Oscar Niemeyer, who remarkably is still at work and celebrated his 100th birthday last Saturday. In Paris last month I went to see his building for the French Communist Party.

PCF, Paris
PCF HQ, Paris

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