Secret Gardens of St John’s Wood
de photographer Peter Marshall in collaboration with the Queen’s Terrace Café
The 'Secret Gardens of St John's Wood' was project initiated by Mireille Galinou of the Queens Terrace Café in April 2011, and I photographed around 20 private gardens (and some others not included in the book) in the following 3 months. Some of the work was shown at this 'cultural café' in St John's Wood from September to November 2001.
The project gave me - and the viewers of this work - a fascinating insight into what is behind some of the high walls that characterise this wealthy area of the British capital. The images are almost all panoramic, with horizontal fields of view from around 90 to 220 degrees. Some also have extreme vertical fields of view.
"I was privileged to be able to visit the gardens in this book, which cover an extremely wide range, including a seventh floor penthouse overlooking the famous Lords cricket ground and an amazing house with three distinct gardens. I also photographed the extensive grounds of one of the neighbours of Paul McCartney."
The area was perhaps the first of the garden suburbs, and this gives the work a unique interest. It includes a brief historical introduction by Mireille Galinou, author of Cottages and Villas, The Birth of the Garden Suburb, published in 2010 by Yale University Press on St John's Wood.
Peter Marshall was born in 1945 in London. His first major show, 'Still Occupied' on the redevelopment of Hull was shown at the Ferens Gallery, Hull in 1983. In recent years he has concentrated on showing photography on the web, in sites including 'The Buildings of London', 'London's Industrial Heritage', 'The River Lea' and 'My London Diary'. Work from 'London's Industrial Heritage' formed the basis of his show at the FotoArtFestival in Bielsko-Biala, Poland in 2005 and from 'My London Diary' in FotoArte 2007 in Brasilia, Brazil. As well as taking part in various exhibitions he has also curated several photography and art exhibitions in London. His work on London is in various public and private collections and has been widely published. From 1999 to 2007 he was the 'Photography Guide' for the 'About.com' web site, writing weekly features and other material for professional photographers, collectors of photography and others with a serious interest in the medium.
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