The Gentle Author’s Next Lantern Show
Window cleaner & man with a wheelbarrow at Buckingham Palace
There are plenty of pictures of Buckingham Palace in the glass slide collection of the London & Middlesex Archaeological Society used for lantern shows at the Bishopsgate Institute a century ago – no doubt employed to encourage patriotic sentiments in the audience.
But this is the one that interests me most, because of the man with the wheelbarrow walking past and the window cleaner perched so precariously upon the second floor window ledge. These individuals may have been merely incidental for the photographer but, to my eyes, they are the subject of the picture – revealing an unexpected glimpse of the people who maintained the facade of power.
Today, I publish photographs of the working people of London from the collection – in some rare examples they are the primary focus of the picture but, in many more, they are just caught unexpectedly by the camera in the midst of toil.
The publication of my Album gives me a wonderful excuse to stage live presentations of some of the photos of London I love the most and announcing these gives me the opportunity to publish more unseen glass slides from the collection.
Through coming weeks, I shall be undertaking a peregrination around London performing my magic lantern show at diverse venues. Next week’s stop is at Woolfson & Tay, an enterprising independent bookshop in Bankside SE1, and I look forward to seeing you there on Thursday night.
THE GENTLE AUTHOR’S MAGIC LANTERN SHOW
Thursday 7th November 7:00pm at Woolfson & Tay, 39 Bear Lane, Bankside, SE1
I will be showing 100 pictures – including selected glass slides from a century ago, telling the stories and counterpointing them with favourite photographs of the unexpected wonders of London today.
Tickets are £3 and reservable by calling o20 7928 6570 or you can buy them online here
Waiting outside the British Museum for a fare
Sweeping snow outside the Green Dragon
Minding an automated bakery
Taking a break at the distillery
Selling papers in the gutter
Making a delivery to a bookshop in Wych St
Practising with the hoses
Minding the cart outside Drury Lane
Counting coins at the mint
Shepherding in Richmond Park
Minding the pumps in Canonbury
Wheeling the barrow through Parliament Sq
Cleaning the optician’s sign
Lugging the timber down Whitehall
Selling flowers in PIccadilly
Glass slides courtesy Bishopsgate Institute