Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Independent Tropical Wales

It’s May 1999 and Queenie, Charlo and Phil the Greek are en route to officially open the Welsh Assembly building in Cardiff’s Docklands. Their Ascot landau can be seen gliding up Bute Street – once a notorious haunt of prostitutes but also a haven for sailors from around the globe. Look closely at the railway wall in the background and you can see the proud graffito: INDEPENDENT TROPICAL WALES (now sadly gone). From a compositional point of view this forms an amusing and sweetly subversive juxtaposition. The photographer, Nick Treharne, clearly armed with local knowledge must have been laying in wait to capture this exact moment. Puzzlingly we don’t have a National Photographic Gallery of Wales, as such, but if we did then this excellent image would surely be in it.

This photograph is the copyright of Nick Treharne.