From June 1 to November 30 is available on the platform KUNSTMATRIX the virtual exhibition “London’s Hottest Postcode N1C” that its author Hazel Bingham organizes as an end of degree project of her photography studies at the UCA. The impossibility of organizing viewings or physical exhibitions due to the pandemic has forced a rethinking of some of the academic events planned for the coming months.
The N1C postcode of London corresponding to the King Cross area is considered one of the “hottest” areas of the city; an example of gentrification, which has favoured the privatisation and commercial use of territory.
The question raised by Hazel Bingham exhibition is not only interesting from a visual point of view, but it also incorporates elements for social reflection. And this point is the aspect of the project that I find most interesting. Re-examining these images in the light of this information, the coldness of these cityscapes acquires a disturbing commercial dimension and the few human figures that appear on the scene seem to me to be tiny decorative accessories to architecture.
The work is consistent from a visual point of view: the continuous presence of construction tools, the scale of the human figure, the level of precision and detail of each of the scenes -which in some cases remind us of the simulated landscapes of architectural studios. Basically the planes are general, but throughout the 23 photographs of the exhibition the use of some details of urban furniture or closer views gives a certain dynamism to the show and provides a reference point for the viewer. It is interesting to use a large image of public toilets that are integrated into the exhibition as if they were the toilets of the gallery.
At first I missed informative elements in the exhibition (posters, texts on the walls), but now I don’t think it’s such a bad idea to confront the spectator with the images of these architectural structures located on the naked wall of the exhibition hall: It is inevitable that recent images of empty city streets during the period of confinement will come to the memory of today’s spectators, and the solitudes of the urban territory thus imagined will become a disturbing permonition of what could become the New Normality.