Faces Of A Fast-Changing Peckham

Will Noble
By Will Noble Last edited 35 months ago
Faces Of A Fast-Changing Peckham
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Ash at Blackbird Bakery
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"It's a perfect job - that sounds kind of stupid but it is!" Damion at Cut Throat London
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Mickey from the Bussey Building
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"I'm Dutch and Afghan that's why I love it here as there's such a mix of nationalities." Erham and his phones
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"Business is good in this area." Dry cleaner Mohammad
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Muriel and Audrey at Uzuri hair salon

It was just a few months ago when south east London photographer Brad Hobbs and his colleague Asher Herr — at the time working in a nightclub together — decided to document the many faces of a swiftly-evolving Peckham. They wanted to capture the characters, those who've been in business for decades, and the entrepreneurs just starting out. As you can see from the gallery above, the photographers' Peckham Project is already well under way.

We ask Brad how people react when a stranger asks to take their photo:

I think people are fairly hostile in general in the post-internet world we live in, as they know that their image can be shown in so many different ways, compared to when it was only print. However, once you talk with people and explain what we're about and they understand our project people are overwhelmingly positive.

But though the pair — both fans of Devin Allen, known for his documentation of police brutality in Baltimore — have charmed many-a barber, beauty therapist and baker, there's still a way to go; Peckham doesn't sit still for one moment, and Brad and Asher have to keep a close eye businesses in the process of closing, and those being set up. Of the latter, says Brad, most are bars and cafes, though perhaps surprisingly, several record shops have opened recently too.

This ongoing evolution does beg the question, will the project ever end? Says Brad:

It's a project which is growing naturally at the moment and could continue for a long time. We have set a time limit of six months by which point we will be in a position to condense our images and material into a series.

While Brad and Asher fervently carry on, somewhereto is securing spaces at venues across Peckham — galleries, restaurants and art spaces — where the project will eventually be displayed. It's fitting that some of those working in these venues will likely be part of the exhibition.

See more images from the Peckham Project on Twitter and Instagram.

Last Updated 20 August 2015