Washing Lines is a photography project centred around Dennistoun, Glasgow that uses portraiture to question the changing nature of the community and explore perceptions around the identity of the area through local washing lines.

Made within the area of Dennistoun with the participation of local residents, the project is a meditation on the barriers to social interaction in the urban environment and a response to the changing fabric of modern community. The images are an investigation into the role of washing lines as traditional communal gathering spaces.

Dennistoun is an area of mixed generations and continuing transformation and it represents a traditional community under change from contemporary pressures. It is observed as an area in disrepair and development but is also notably experiencing regeneration. As a community it remains a hub of contradictions with an elusive sense of identity, with a lingering sense of division.

The project is inspired by the shift in Dennistoun’s landscape from tenements with back courts, to high rises to the pockets of new builds that have sprung up. The project employs the washing line as a visual signifier of traditional and domestic interaction between neighbours. A site of support, exchange and unique etiquette that is in decline. Technology and cultural shifts have changed our domestic habits and with the change,  interaction has diminished. The project seeks to re-purpose washing lines as traditional nodes of social exchange and as a site of refreshing both ones washing and links to their neighbours. Washing is a visual but private display of personality and collectively represents a tapestry of local life within a community.

All participants are invited to have their portrait taken in the area with their personal story hung on their washing line. We wish to hear personal accounts across a spectrum of residents and generations that can illustrate what community means and how it has changed for the better or worse and incorporate these into honest, dynamic and sometimes playful portraits.

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