My East End Photography Competition
Spitalfields Life was one of the winners in the My East End Photography Competition – for this portrait of Gary Arber the third generation printer, that I took in February in the comp room of the printing works in Roman Rd, opened by Gary’s grandfather Walter Francis Arber in 1897, where once the Suffragettes’ handbills were printed. “I’m here under duress because I’m an airman,” Gary told me when I first met him, because he sacrificed a career flying Lincoln Bombers to take over the printing works when his father died in 1954. Presiding over this print shop of a century ago where the twentieth century passed through like a whirlwind, Gary still retains the nonchalant professionalism of a flying ace.
On Thursday night, I went over to meet Gary when he shut up shop at five thirty and we sauntered casually along together down the Roman Rd to the Four Corners centre for film and photography, for the opening of an exhibition of the winning photos, where at a small ceremony Gary graciously accepted the award on my behalf. Among over four hundred entries, there were a large number of interesting photographs that add up to an impressive panorama of the East End at this moment. After searching through all the entries, it is my pleasure to present this small personal selection of works that caught my eye. Other notable inclusions were pictures by Spitalfields Life contributing photographers Sarah Ainslie and Jeremy Freedman, Sarah’s portrait of John Wright in Shadwell and Jeremy’s picture of Sandys Row Synagogue at dawn.
The judges of the competition were Martin Parr, photographer, Steven Berkoff, actor, and Kate Edwards of the Guardian. Speaking for the judges, Steven Berkoff said, “The pictures that stuck out for me were the pictures that expressed the deepest humanity. There is something eternal about the East End – a toughness and sturdiness, a tremendous amount of tolerance to difficult times.”
Yilmaz the tailor, Leyla Guler
Ann & Kitty eating jellied eels at the Eid party, Micahel Jones
Family in Lounge, Mary Cavanagh
Meat Trolley, Ridley Rd Market, Dalston, Agnes Sanvito
Old Sailor in Brick Lane, Johnny Pitts
Hasidic jews blessing the sun at dawn in Clissold Park, Olivia Harris
East London Line workforce, Scott Cullen
Working Nights, Bella Felling
I worked on the locks at the docks for twenty years,Vince Felice
Looking East from Canary Wharf on a snowy day, Shamir Sangrajka
Scattered thoughts, Jourdan.