The New Village – John Spinks
Published by Bemojake, 2017
A Short Review
I purchased this photobook after attending the lecture given by John Spinks at the Falmouth F2F at Falmouth in 2017 and also having read a review in the Guardian – The New Village by John Spinks – review.
I had a personal interest in this book, mainly because it involved a ‘return to home’ on the part of the Author. We are guided through paths in the surrounding countryside before encountering, if only briefly, the New Village itself and several of the inhabitants. The New Village in question is a Mining Community in the Midlands which, like so many others, has lost its colliery. As such, the place is recognisable to me – from my own experience in growing up in a mining community.
There is a great sense of loss throughout the images featured in the book but also a strong feeling of foreboding being projected through the images. There seems to be a nervousness on the part of the author about returning to the area, which is something that I do not feel when returning to my own home town of Merthyr Vale, yet the images also portray some of the same sense of loss that I myself feel on entering my home town.
I will return to this book at later date to discuss it further, it has close ties to my own Final Major Project.
Overall though, I was somewhat disappointed by the lack of images of the New Village itself and can’t help feeling that I would like to have seen more images of the buildings and locations that make up the village.