How does one comprehend a life photographically, and the experiences that make it? Matthew Finn’s photographs are an account of a life, that of his mother in Leeds, its slow transformation, its slow retreat from the shape of the everyday – an everyday marked by things, relationships with things and people, which make up an experience of the world.
(Elizabeth Edwards, Visual and Historical Anthropologist.)
Francesca Maffeo Gallery is pleased to present ‘Mother, “I’ve lived a good life”’ by award winning British Photographer Matthew Finn. This solo exhibition presents an extensive archive of work created over a 30 year period, comprising unseen vintage prints and colour works.
Finn photographed his mother Jean within the setting of the family home in Leeds, borne from a need to ‘create stability’ and it subsequently became a ritual he could not abandon.
These tender portraits represent an intimate experience between a son and his mother. These images, this act of photographing, often stood in place of conversations, a tension which on occasion hangs heavy between the lens and Jean’s gaze.
Finn is often reflected back in the image, a dialogue where seemingly mundane moments are paused. This series quite simply presents us with the purity of a unique relationship and bond.
Photography and the act of being photographed – to be wanted, to be needed – formed a strong bond between us. Over time she became the director who would decide whether to allow the camera into her presence. She became aware of the quality of light, of her best side, and of how close I should get. I was more than happy to be involved in this dance.