CONTRAST: A Black & White Series
Barras Market in Glasgow
PHOTOGRAPHY AND WORDS BY STUART EDWARDS
This photographic documentary series focuses on the once thriving Barras Market and the older generation of traders who still work there today. The market is steeped in nostalgia and in many ways is a time capsule of the past.
With Glasgow’s vast gentrification, the market, which was established in 1921, has been left behind and the traders occupying the stalls now barely make enough profit to pay their rent.
The market is reaching the end of its life-cycle, however, there is still a strong sense of community & camaraderie amongst the elderly traders and their customers.
This black & white gallery represents my time at the market last winter & focuses strongly on the nostalgia of the market and the older trading community. In winter, the market is very quiet and you really see the core of its community becoming alive & how they look out for one another.
For this set of photographs I wanted to focus on the more banal moments, when the hustle & bustle had died down & what’s left are the rituals of the market and the routines of the community. You would see the same faces shuffling around looking for bargains and brick-a-brac in the cold, the stall holders bantering with each other, the empty corridors with closed shutters from recently vacated stalls and the sound of bacon sizzling amongst all the chatter in the cafe.
All these moments were so atmospheric and seemed stuck in time. I tried to blend into these scenes & capture the essence of these small intimate moments, shooting in black & white 35mm film which aesthetically enhances & accentuates the idea that these market scenes are from a bygone age, a self-contained world that encapsulates time and friendships.