Masterplan is a five year project (2016 – 2020) using photography, film and archival research to tell the story of Jersey’s economic growth an development in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The huge importance of the finance sector to the post war economic trajectory of the island of Jersey is an area in which Photographic Archives until now remain deficient. A visual record of contemporary Jersey is a question of what visual record there is of finance. And, what is a visual record of finance?
Masterplan is a collaborative photographic research project between Martin Toft and Gareth Syvret at Archisle: The Jersey Contemporary Photography Programme, hosted by the Société Jersiaise Photographic Archive. Over the next five years multiple outcomes will develop in collaboration with award winning design partner, Kummer & Herrman.
With the construction of new Grade-A offices in St Helier we want to record progress and change in the nature of working practice in the financial services sector and respond to finance companies relocating from old premises in the centre/north of St Helier into new offices on the Esplanade/ Waterfront. With reference to an ‘archeological dig’ we are photographing each area, piece of furniture, office implement and labeling and classifying it as specimens according to its usage and function.
The Société Jersiaise social history object collections and photographic archives include items and records that represent the historical developments and changes in work and economic activity since time immemorial. It is easy to understand why a museum collection of farming tools is needed to tell the story of the agricultural industry at Hamptonne Country Life Museum but perhaps less obvious that our successors will need to tell the story of the Finance Industry in future.
Referencing Emile F. Guiton’s images from 1911-12 in the Société Jersiaise Photographic-Archive of bronze-age artefacts from La Motte site (Green Island) with new photographs made from La Motte Chambers (RBC old offices) probing a visual discourse between the prehistoric and the digital.
One area of research is the impact on the build environment, in particular the construction of the International Finance Centre Jersey on the Esplanade Quarter development on Saint Helier’s Waterfront.
Henry Mullins (1849-1873) The Société Jersiaise Photographic-Archive
Within the Masterplan project we are exploring a number of other areas of research into business anthropology and the construction of corporate identity through the use of photography and messaging in marketing where patterns of gender stereotypes emerge frequently, and surprisingly unchecked. We want to produce a set of 3 x 100 thematic portrait series across a broad demographic of professionals working within the financial services sector and associated industries such as construction and hospitality. Painted backdrops to be commissioned by local artists from areas where Jersey financial services operate across global capital markets in Asia, Gulf States, Africa, Europe and the UK will be combined digitally in post-production.