Water & Steam was a collaboration with London Museum of Water and Steam in Brentford, recording its role as both an archive of the world’s largest collection of stationary steam pumping engines and as a local attraction that prioritises education and its local community.
Small non-profit museums often lack reliable funding, and relying on community support to survive and supporting their community in turn. By documenting the museum we celebrate it as a living, interactive space that not only holds these historically significant engines but also shares them with the public. There’s something really excting about watching children get excited by all the machines, learning how they work and what they do.
Due to the scale and complexity of some of the machines, recording this spacewas sometimes an almost overwhelming task, and I found that seperating what I was seeing into multiple layers allowed me to focus on both the details and the space as a whole. There’s also a playful quality to tunnel books and paper theatres that fits in both with the museum’s 18th century history and their largest visitor demographic: children. These tunnel books aim to act as small snapshots, three dimensional spaces that feel tangible.
Reportage illustration is wonderfully contradictory in that you’re both an outside observer and an active participant in your subject’s story. It’s both removed and suprisingly personal.