For over 25 years Tessa has photographed rural life, working closely with individuals and communities to investigate how the landscape is shaped by humans. From hill farmers near her home in North Yorkshire to Icelandic puffin hunters, from Finnish ice swimmers to Romanian nomadic shepherds her projects reveal the fascinating intricacies of the dependencies between people, work and the land.
Saturday 11th January 2020 until Sunday 5th April 2020
Otherwise Unseen brings together four series which explore various rural communities in Europe and in South East Asia, where Tessa was based for five years.
Hand to Mouth explores the lives of villagers and nomadic shepherds in Romania’s Carpathian Mountains. Made over a period of four years, Tessa worked closely with these communities, spending prolonged periods in villages and shepherd camps. This work is a journey through the seasons, witnessing the changing landscape and the rhythms of rural activities, cheese making, crop harvesting and sheep milking.
Home Work explores the lives of female home workers in the suburbs and villages in and around Hanoi, Vietnam in the face of increasing urbanisation. These ‘craft’ villages specialise in a single product or activity, anything from palm leaf hats to incense sticks, or from noodle making to snake-catching. Some of these ‘craft’ villages date back hundreds of years, whilst others are a more recent response to enable rural farmers to earn much needed extra income.
The Nam Ou is part of The Corridor of Opportunity, a series of inter-connected landscape stories aiming to unravel the complexities of the contemporary landscape in Northern Laos. This work documents daily life along the Nam Ou river, one of the Mekong’s major tributaries, and the ongoing process as the villages, some over 200 years old and their inhabitants are temporarily and then permanently relocated to make way for a major hydropower project.
FarmerFlorist celebrates the domestic flower growers of Britain, both past and present. Flower farms were once a familiar feature of the British countryside, but were gradually expunged by industrialised growing methods in the 19th century and then globalisation in the 20th. But now in the 21st century, small flower farms are springing up again, fed by fresh interest in environmental sustainability and local seasonal produce.
Tessa’s work aims to contribute to the ongoing debate about the changing nature of rural life.