To have been intimate with a site for over 50 years is highly uncommon, and to revisit that location is what photographer Harry Cory Wright did with his series Hey Charlie. Thanks to a special connection and affinity to a specific spot in Norfolk, East England, Wright did what he could to transform distant but vivid recollections into pictures. It was a place where he spent countless childhood days, so he shot a particular bend in the river and the field beside it.
Wright wrote these candid thoughts back in October 2012 as he began the project,
“The plan has been to rephotograph the place as a sort of celebration; screw the nostalgia here… reinvent, turn the place on its head…. and have a laugh with my old mate down by the river. Pictures to follow therefore… and think pyrotechnics.”
Now on exhibit until the 14th of September at Eleven Fine Art, however, Hey Charlie does not disappoint. Depicted is a magical place of wonder and discovery, forgivingly allowed the sugar coated glaze of any man’s fond childhood memories. The name of the exhibit hints to distant echoes of growing up as Wright would holler out to his brother Charlie, “Hey Charlie!” It is a deeply personal journey back, no doubt, but appeals universally through the way Wright resurrects brief moments we share in our collective memories of glorious childhoods gone by. Hey Charlie is sentimental, nostalgic, and surely gives pause to reminisce on times that put a smile on your face.
Wright chose to use the large 10 x 8 inch plate camera alongside high end digital cameras. “The particular – and somewhat self-important – nature of the 10 x 8 inch negative has always elevated the picture taking process and given weight to the final piece. I found that working with digital cameras has allowed me to retain the importance of “being there” and the photographic element of “witness”… In this series, where there is such a blend of real and fantasy, this combination of working methods has been invaluable.”
Experience Wright’s personal walk down memory lane with Hey Charlie, and make a part of it yours, too.