John MacPherson Photography

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Beachview Arts Project 2004

Helen Keller International Award 2004

This piece of work is designed to challenge the viewer. The series of triangular columns present a variety of sides when viewed from different angles.

By splitting a series of images across these sides, and varying the sizes of the two halves of the images, it forces viewers to have to find the appropriate perspective to view one individual. It is impossible to see any more than one whole person at a time.

Some of the images are deliberately blurred to simulate the view of a partially sighted person.

In order to successfully view the portraits, viewers will need to work at finding the correct perspective.

My hope was that the work would raise awareness of the fact that people with communication impairments such as deaf-blindness are able to communicate, but we must approach them in a specific way, on an individual basis.

The message in the work is simple - if you can see a person as an individual, with specific abilities and communication needs, you will have started the process of understanding what they have to share with you.

The work is a collaborative piece, the result of a lot of thought and hard work done by clients and staff of Beachview Centre, Brora, Sutherland.

The centre provides a day service, and occasional respite care, for adults with learning disabilities from the northern Highlands of Scotland.

The work was displayed in the Collins Gallery, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, during 2005.

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