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Showing posts from February, 2018

PhD Research Projects Conference 2018

So my first experience of the Bartlett from a student perspective - listening to current students present on their research. A real eye opener in terms of the diversity of subject matter and approach - occasionally baffling, nearly always engaging, esp. when it came to Miranda Critchley work on photographs of the building of the Metropolitan Railway in London - lots of ideas and avenues to think about for my research.

Why the Good Builder?

After completing my M.St I was looking for a subject which might make a good PhD - something that had not been written about specifically so meeting the uniqueness requirement but in an area where there was a lot of material and ideally something that would leverage my interest and past research in photography. A colleague at work came up with the perfect solution - looking at the John Laing Collection, an approx. 230,000 image archive held by  Historic England  for whom I work. John Laing was a major construction company with a long history stretching back into the late nineteenth century (they are now mainly involved in infrastructure investment and asset management).  The company was the primary contractor for a number of "firsts" including the M1 Motorway and Berkeley Power Station (Britain's first commercial nuclear power station). John W. Laing (1879–1978) was a devout Christian and carried out many philanthropic works during his life, hence The Good Builder has t

Designing Pan Am

We are now a couple of weeks away from my graduation ceremony at the Sheldonian and the end of one amazing journey to an M.St in the History of Design. My dissertation was on Pan Am in the 1930s and more specifically on the Boeing B-314 flying boat, a stupendous aircraft that initiated passenger flight over the Atlantic, and the way that Pan Am could be considered as a Modernist creation. The result is 15,000 words and images and a big pile of books and papers - the final submission can be found here -   The System of the Flying Clippers - Designing Pan Am . A lot of people have helped with this, especially Barry O'Keefe at the  Foynes Flying Boat & Maritime Museum  and the good people at  The Pan Am Historical Foundation . The next adventure is something very different and so has this new blog.