And how are we to make sense of the fact that poetic or literary locutions ‘take shape’, have real effects, rather than being reflections of the real?

Jacques Rancière, The Politics of Aesthetics [2004]

The 2020 graduates of MA Documentary Photography and Photojournalism have faced extraordinary challenges as their studies were diverted overnight;  the external world becoming an empty tableaux; life as they knew it, hurried behind closed doors.

Everything was to be re-negotiated. Yet out of the restrictions came unanticipated outcomes, new directions and unprecedented work. They have managed to build responses that allowed them to see and articulate something of societal value, responding to the world in a complex variety of ways.

It felt as if the pandemic limited choices for the documentarist, yet it has sharpened appetites for a focussed response. For some, it became a time of deep reflection of how personal histories have an interdependency with wider socio-political concerns, while others attempted to renegotiate representational models within interpretations of the now, and much else in-between.

The title of the collective works; ‘My Own Eyes are Clear’, suggests that some transformation has occurred; perhaps in society, perhaps elsewhere, but something that advocates a clarity as we step outside to see what there is in our new world.

Congratulations to them all

David Moore Principal Lecturer / Course Leader MA Documentary Photography and Photojournalism
University of Westminster