Mother And Father
“Mother and Father” is a moving journal of the final years of a sixty-year marriage. For ten years, from 1997 to 2007 Paddy Summerfield photographed his parents, reflecting on the bond between them, which even the effects of Alzheimers could not break. They become symbols in a drama of balance and tension, which is both domestic and epic. As he says: “I recorded my mother's loss of the world, my father's loss of his wife and, eventually, my loss of them both.”
The images are primarily taken in their garden, though the central section shows holiday visits to the Welsh coast, where the raven frequently appears alongside their world. Finally, the once cultivated garden becomes a neglected wilderness, in the absence of the two people who spent long days there, who cared for it, and for each other. These thoughtful, often melancholy, images form a personal piece which is simultaneously universal.