My book has arrived!
It was both interesting and refreshing to see the building being renovated but still retaining its use as a home for homeless. So often these beautiful buildings are renovated into flats, marking a change in chapter for the building.
Richard Rowlands has captured the transformation in a subtle way which blends the architectural change with the people who reside there and its history. It does not seem to delve too deeply into why these people are there or their life story but you get a sense as you move through the book.
The clothes in bin bags hint at this being a temporary space for the occupant, or perhaps they came with very little. The building is run down and poorly kept but then its mission is not for profit. The instructions of support needed and the claiming of furniture tell their own stories. By the end of the book you can see and almost feel the life returning to the building, bright clean spaces, fresh walls and a spark of optimism.
My flat no longer has a tenant and I will not have time in the duration of this assignment to catalogue the renovations however I did spot some similarities to some of the images I have taken.
The layers of wallpaper which you can see reveal runs of blue paint. I unmasked the football cards and layers to reveal runs of paint which appeared almost abstract.
The pattern on the walls are all that remain of what has been removed, I too had these after the square silver tiles had been removed.
The chair, heavily stained and marked that has most likely seen and heard it all, steadfastly sat in the corner through all the years. My sofa in the flat was dishevelled and stained, with holes that I’m certain the cat climbed in to sleep.