CAERDYDD DIARY

In 2011, I was invited by Visiting Arts UK to spend the summer in Cardiff, Wales. During the residency, I was free to explore Cardiff and interact with the city and its communities in any way I wanted to. Given that it was my first time in Britain, I set out with the best of intentions to somehow document the Welsh identity as I perceived it. Disappointingly, I found none of that. Instead, it seemed to me that Cardiff was symbolic of Britain itself - once a great culture, now awaiting a renewed sense of purpose in this fast-changing world.

Devoid of street life and with ample sky light to work with during the late evening hours, Cardiff offered me the unique opportunity to explore an illuminated British urban landscape like a movie set waiting for characters. Or like a jungle where you can't see the creatures, but you know they're out there and watching you—through omnipresent CCTVs, in this case.

My most significant photographs—the ones that made my friends call me to find out if I was doing alright—were made in neighbourhoods and public spaces where the quietness matched my own depressive mood. I needed to take these pictures to attain equanimity in a place and time that left me emotionally drained. This diary chronicles my journey from hope to despair and back. I slipped in and out of depression in the interim and found my own melancholy reflected in the people I met.

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Caerdydd Diary
2011

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