250MC Photography in context – Assignments

This project is based on the archeology and history of typographic structure of the map – Coventry.  My task is to select the location of the following maps to meet specific subject of my photographic work


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It took me some time before I found the right way to start a work on its implementation, at the beginning I did not know what I want to do and how I will do it.

I was very nervous and unsure of my ideas. My Uncertainty associated with the monotony of the themes that I associated with the locations on the map.

Last year I was making projects related to documentary photography, based on the theme of the Second World War, social life and  the influence of artists on the development of cities.  For this reason, I decided that I want to get out of the parentheses of what I already have any experience and  I want to try something new.

I gotta admit to such an Establishment persuaded me lecture –  Sunca Kocer,, “I am a media Anthropologist,,

Suncen worked on a task which went beyond her abilities, as she said,, I did not know then that I myself was to become a documentary film producer at the end of my research year,, Her attitude made ​​me feel more confident, and I started to wonder on the subject of my research.

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At the beginning I started to look for information on the Internet, most often I found  historical information related to the time of the war, the patron of the city Lady Godiva, and production of cars and bikes in Coventry.


Summary of the information collected on the Internet and University Library, Nuneaton Library

Coventry ancient city probably grew out of the village, which was founded back in the Bronze Age. The Romans, during their presence in the British Isles, near the village created another village – Baginton. However, everything was destroyed during the invasion of the Danish king in 1016 years.

In 1043 years on the ruins of the monastery Saxons, Earl Leofric of Mercia and his wife Lady Godiva organised and funded the construction of the monastery of Benedictine. This year is considered to be the beginning of today’s Coventry.

 In the fourteenth century the town was growing  center of trade. In the Middle Ages Coventry was considered one of the most important contemporary cities. In 1345 years gained the status of “city”, and in 1451 years has gained the status of a county.

In the past, Coventry was an important center for the production of silk ribbons, the City has a long history of the automotive industry dating back to 1896, in this city produced bicycles, cars (London taxi), agricultural machinery, aircraft engines, and also military equipment.  In 1910, in Coventry, was formed first cinema, and four years later launched public transport. After World War I, industrial production has increased significantly.  

In 1910, in Coventry, was formed first cinema, and four years later launched public transport. After World War I, industrial production has increased significantly.


World War II was a hard experience for Coventry. Because of the presence of such sectors as manufacturing of weapons, ammunition and aircraft engines, the city was bombed, November 14, 1940 “Coventry Blitz”. Destroyed about 4 thousand residential buildings and historic – the cathedral. During the bombing, many residents were killed, historians also believe that it was a retaliation for the attack on the Munich conducted six days earlier by the RAF.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11486219 By Ian Shoesmith & Jon Kelly,BBC News


LIFE Magazine is the treasured photographic magazine that chronicled the 20th Century. It now lives on at LIFE.com, the largest, most amazing collection of professional photography on the internet. Users can browse, search and view photos of today’s people and events. They have free access to share, print and post images for personal use.



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Bibliography: TIME.com, (2014). LIFE – Classic Pictures From LIFE Magazine’s Archives | TIME.com.  23 Dec 1940 72 pages Vol. 9, No. 26 ISSN 0024-3019 , Published by Time Inc

After the war, the city was rebuilt according to the plan of Gibson. In 1962, according to a design by Sir Basil Spence’s new cathedral was built, it is located nearby the ruins of the historic cathedral.

These city is very international center for culture, Asian and Caribbean culture, has expanded in Coventry, In 1960, the city built one of the first mosques in the UK.

Coventry has a very interesting history, from the economic and cultural side, the city is also an important center of education. In Coventry there are many different schools at every level of education. In Coventry there are many different schools at every level of education. In the city there are two universities, located in the city center, Coventry University and located in the south, the University of Warwick. Currently in Coventry developing sectors such as business services, financial services, research laboratories, logistics and tourism.



My research , due to the sympathies of the documentary photograph and my experience in working with people as a nurse , always lead me up for stories about people and their lives .  

A Coventry Kid  – By Les Ryan

This book tells the history of a young boy living and working in Coventry , the publication shows how the city has changed over the years also shows how social norms have changed . Describes the life and realism of laborers during World War II . This book is a journal of life, contains many valuable photograph and postcards from Coventry.

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Bibliography: Thomas, H. (2012). Cov Kid has memories and stories of eventful life published. [online] coventrytelegraph. Available at: http://www.coventrytelegraph.net/news/coventry-news/cov-kid-memories-stories-eventful-3018467

looking over various public internet forums about the city of Coventry, I came across an often used phrase:

Screen Shot 2014-11-01 at 18.48.35Netmums, (2014). Parenting advice and information in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. [online] Available at: http://www.netmums.com/ [Accessed 2 Nov. 2014].

,,Thrue as Coventry blue,,

Bibliography: Forum.historiccoventry.co.uk, (2014). The Historic Coventry Forum. [online] Available at: http://forum.historiccoventry.co.uk

,,True as Coventry blue,, Mary Hulton published by the Coventry the historical association 1995 series editior – Eileen Castle


Archives- Herbert Gallery Coventry – a summary of information from books


By 1200, Coventry had grown into a prosperous city, probably the third largest in England, a centre of the wool and cloth trade.

Wool and weaving led naturally to dyeing, and in Coventry this was a highly specialised craft. This led to the development of a blue dye created from sloe berries and other ingredients, that gave a rich, fast colour. This dye led to the expression ‘As true as Coventry Blue’, for the dye survived washing. The manufacture of this dye was a closely guarded secret of the guild in Coventry and was passed by word of mouth, from master to apprentice. So successful were they in protecting their recipe that today nobody knows how it was made, or even what colour it was exactly.

examples on the application of this saying in the arts:




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At this point I decided that I needed to look for other sources of information and also to look from a different perspective on this project. Very helpful to me were workshops by Brinder Rajpal – discusses the value of cultural awareness, and The Anthropology of Tourism by Caroline Molloy. I understood that I very claustrophobic approach my work so I gotta try to plan a more extensive search.

Screen Shot 2014-10-31 at 22.41.58  example of lecture by Brinder Rajpal

My first idea to expand my research was a visit to the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, during the tour I found out about the many unknown facts from the history of the city of Coventry.



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I was inspired by the history of the production of silk and ribbons, I spent a lot of time in the museum, not only watching the exhibits but also in conversation with people from the museum archive.


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Archives Herbert Gallery Coventry


The Price Guide to Stevengraphs

Published by the antique collectors club and printed in England by Baron Publishing Woodbridge, Suffolk

Silk industry of the United Kingdom IS ORGINAL AND DEVELOPMENT

By sir frank warner K.B.E London Danegeld house 82 a Frringdon street EC

Godden, G. (1971). Stevengraphs and other Victorian silk pictures. Rutherford [N.J.]: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press.

The unpublished diary of William Andrews

Master and artisan in Victorian England

The autobiography of Joseph Gutteridge

document of social history editor : Anthony Adams 1969

Coventry ribbon trade in the mid Victorian period

Some social and economic responses to industrial development and decay

By Nicolas Tiratsso University of London January 1980

,,True as Coventry blue,, Mary Hulton

published by the Coventry brsnch of the historical association 1995 series editior – Eileen Castle

Miragebookmark.ch, (2014). Mirage Bookmark: Beautiful Bookmark Exhibition, History of Bookmarks. [online] Available at: http://www.miragebookmark.ch/

Stevengraphs.com, (2014). Stevengraphs Bookmarks & Postcards Etc.. [online] Available at: http://www.stevengraphs.com

Victoriansilk.com, (2014). Stevengraph, Grant and Other Victorian Silks. [online] Available at: http://www.victoriansilk.com/ [Accessed 2 Nov. 2014].


Idea – came up during my of searching in the archives of the museum

I think that it might interesting topic, maybe quite trivial, but I liked this subject and artifact which is a silk ribbon, my only problem is, fit this issue to the location and form of the photograph.  

My idea for this project arose from the word ribbon, which reminded me of the element of dress and decoration, I decided that I Combine this item with fashion photography, and expand my research on the location of factories and workshops of weaving.

From the beginning of my search I headed toward the general question –  weaving

Summary of my research on the historical outline associated with the Ribbon

Screen Shot 2014-11-01 at 22.36.13http://www.metmuseum.org/

Weavers, Tomb of Khnumhotep Norman de Garis Davies (1865–1941) Period: Middle KingdomDynasty: Dynasty 12

Bibliography: Art Renewal Center, (2014). Art Renewal Center® Leading the Revival of Realism in the Fine Arts. http://www.artrenewal.org

Ribbon since ancient times been used as ornaments – parts of dress, social status symbol of love, of belonging, death. Over time, their use has changed dramatically, from parts of underwear, belts, decoration and borders, bows and rosettes.

The oldest known ribbons – narrow strips of fabric – come from ancient Egypt, and it dates back to 3000 BC. In ancient Egypt, narrow tunics were often held by straps, and sometimes bind them at the waist with narrow stripes of fabric. The more sophisticated robe, the higher the status of its owner. This pattern clothes lasted for centuries, until the times of the ancient Greeks and Romans.


painting on one side of a skyphos (drinking cup) showing Penelope and Telemachus (by the Penelope Painter, #Chiusi 1831). Plicklider.com, (2014). Home Page. [online] Available at: http://www.plicklider.com

In the Middle Ages there was much more decorative trim used to embellish clothing, During this time, significant changes have taken place also in hairstyles and hats – have become more formal and fancy ribbons have become a valuable commodity, especially valuable were silk ribbons. In the sixteenth century developed trade with the New World, emerged the new trends in fashion. The beauty and ostentation of clothing from the late sixteenth century, illustrates the wardrobe of Elizabeth I – her clothes were almost entirely covered with pearls, embroidery and ribbons.


One of at least three versions of The Armada Portrait.At Woburn Abbey. Tudorhistory.org, (2014). TudorHistory.org. [online] Available at: http://tudorhistory.org

Ribbon scrolls between the ages always hosted in the dressing room of the aristocracy, both women’s and men’s clothing. Worn by men breeches, doublets and boots were invariably decorated with bunches of ribbons. Tight stockings pulled over the breeches and attached garters, which are also decorated with ribbons. Women’s dresses was cut or pulled up with ribbons to present the richly decorated petticoats.


Artist Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (1780–1867), Portrait of Princesse Albert de Broglie, née Joséphine-Eléonore-Marie-Pauline de Galard de Brassac de Béarn Date 1853  Source/Photographer, Art Renewal Center, (2014). Art Renewal Center® Leading the Revival of Realism in the Fine Arts. [online] Available at: http://www.artrenewal.org/ [Accessed 1 Nov. 2014].

Not all of the books I was able to find in the library or in the museum archives , some issue I found on amazon and kindle


Ribbon played an important role: they were used for seaming and dress hats, hair tying, lacing shoes, as well as belts, sashes, ruffles and artificial flowers. Small children were almost invisible under copious amounts of ribbons, drapes and curtains decorated with broad stripes of silk and ribbons. Produced ribbons in a variety of forms and colors: plain, striped, plaid, with imprinted pattern, shiny, tinted and patterned.

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Bibliography: Broudy, E. (1993). The book of looms. Hanover: Brown University Press


Ribbon produced in Coventry, had amazing variety used not only as part of clothes,In the 60s the nineteenth century, in the British textile industry in Coventry begun produced woven silk ribbon bookmark.

One of the first bookmark, was made after the death of Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria. Thomas Stevens was the creator of silk bookmarks, he was also a collector. He had approx. 900 pieces.

Manufactured by him ribbon tabs are called stevengraphs And, they were created for different occasions and holidays. In Victorian times silk ribbon bookmark was a very welcome gift. At the beginning of the twentieth century. Bookmark began to be used for advertising purposes, for example, by publishing, insurance companies.

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100 Antiques of the Future By Michael Hogben,

Hogben, M. (2007). 100 antiques of the future. London: New Holland.




Coventry became a center of silk production and ribbons factories prospered very well. in 1766 introduced an embargo on the import of finished products of silk, for a long time it provided a Coventry monopoly on the products of silk.

After 1770, the Dutch began to make mechanical looms. Despite its name, were still operated by hand, but they are allowed to do six ribbons at one time.

In 1823 in Coventry, Jacquard loom was introduced, allowing the selection of ribbons became more diverse. Began to build factories-producing ribbons,

In the mid-nineteenth century, half the working population of Coventry was associated with the production of ribbons. for a long period, ribbon was the main asset of clothing, the situation began to change, since 1930 Ribbon importance as part of the outfit has decreased significantly – ribbon appeared only from time to time as a manifestation of some fashion trends.

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Pinterest, (2014). Ribbons & Fashion. [online] Available at: http://www.pinterest.com/papermart/ribbons-fashion/


At this level of my work on the project when I met already historical outline, my further studies have focused on locating the places where the produced silk ribbons. In this task very helped me a museum archive, and Coventry Society Organization.

During my work I used the conclusions which I drew from the lecture with Anthony Luver, who working on a project about people who have experienced homelessness living in Brighton. He has set a great emphasis on getting to know the place, the city and the history, of what has helped him establish a relationship with the subject and the community.


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Anthony Luvera, (2014). Anthony Luvera – artist, writer, educator. [online] Available at: http://www.luvera.com/


Coventry Then and Now

YouTube, (2014). Coventry: Then and Now (50+ Old Photos). [online] Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RqTognrzu4 [

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I also drew my attention to the publication :

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George Demidowicz looks at the buildings of Coventry, explaining their architecture, their architects, and the original uses of many of the buildings. Author: George Demidowicz

Publisher:Stroud : Tempus, 2003., Series: Buildings of England. Source – Nuneaton Library & Information Centre


Location of the textile industry in Coventry


,,Silk ribbon weaving developed as a speciality in and around the city of Coventry. In medieval times immigrants had settled in the villages to the North, especially Foleshill. The heart of Coventry was a tangle of narrow, cobbled streets, lined with timbered houses. Leading off these streets were alleys, courts and yards packed with cramped brick cottages where weavers laboured in small workshops or “topshops”. The earliest evidence of a weaving industry in Coventry was in 1685 when many French refugees settled in the Hillfields/Spittlemore area after the edict of Nantes. They introduced the weaving trade of silks and ribbons.

Hillfields itself was created as mainly a ribbon weaving suburb of Coventry in 1828. Within the city there was over-crowding and squalor and the more prosperous ribbon weavers set up home in the new town of Hillfields, where properties were more spacious with gardens. Whilst the city became more dominated by factories, Hillfields was the home of independent craftsmen. The industry was initially a cottage industry with individual weaving workshops located above residential properties in topshops. there were a large number of topshops in Hillfields ,,   from Furnivalfamilytree.blogspot.co.uk, (2006). Furnival Family Tree. [online] Available at: http://furnivalfamilytree.blogspot.co.uk


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http://www.activwebdesign.com/, A. (2014). Information on the Foleshill area of Coventry. [online] Coventrysociety.org.uk. Available at: http://www.coventrysociety.org.uk/coventry-neighbourhoods/foleshill.html



When  i conducting this  research  I used public transport – in order to see most of the streets. I changed buses and every day on the way to the university , I traveled by other bus line.

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The biggest factory, producing textiles in Coventry

Courtaulds Textile Works, Coventry, 1928

Screen Shot 2014-11-02 at 13.51.58Britainfromabove.org.uk, (2014). Britain from Above | Rescue the Past. [online]

Picture2File0865 Flickr, (2014). The Coventry Society. [online] Available at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/coventrysociety

Screen Shot 2014-11-02 at 20.30.03 from-  http://www.vam.ac.uk/

180px-Im195501Vog-Courtaulds 180px-Im194711AE-Courtaulds 180px-Im194604HG-Court 180px-Im19281208ILN-Coutalds



The Company was founded by George Courtauld and his cousin Peter Taylor (1790–1850)


Courtaulds was a United Kingdom-based manufacturer of fabric, clothing, artificial fibres, and chemicals. It was established in 1794 and became the world’s leading man-made fibre production company before being broken up in 1990.

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This is Foleshill Road with the Coventry and Canal, Most of the buildings are  gone, but the clock and associated building was saved.

Foleshill – The People’s Hill

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 YouTube, (2014). Foleshill – The People’s Hill. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6Fd_vaBey0&feature=youtu.be  Published on 2 Oct 2013 Videos from Coventry City Council




,,Coventry’s first nineteenth century planned suburban development began in Hillfields in 1828 and consequently by the turn of the century had little left of the old rural area except Primrose Hill House, a building of indeterminate age. That does not mean to say that there was no heritage worth preserving – quite the contrary. This became Coventry’s premier ribbon weaving area with many houses operating their own weaving looms. But more particularly there was the Vernon Street triangle, Hillfields own rather special contribution to the Industrial Revolution, where the factory system was combined with the workers domestic residence.,,    from Thecoventrywehavelost.co.uk, (2014). The Coventry We Have Lost: Historical picture postcards of Coventry throughout the ages. [online] Available at: http://www.thecoventrywehavelost.co.uk

Bbc.co.uk, (2014). BBC – Coventry and Warwickshire – Places – Your photos of Coventry. [online] Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/coventry/content/image_galleries/covscape_oldpics_gallery.shtml?84

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Earth.google.com, 2014

Primrose Hill Street

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Berry Stree

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The Binley Oak, Paynes Lane  

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Coventry photographers

,,There were many portrait photographers in Coventry during the nineteenth century but only one produced a range of outdoor views for commercial gain. It is due to the work of a chemist called Wingrave in the High Street, who started producing views of Coventry in the 1860s, that we have some record of Coventry street life in the nineteenth century. No other local photographer produced any views until the early twentieth century when photographic materials had become so cheap that postcard sized photographs could be made to compete with printed versions,,

ifo from Thecoventrywehavelost.co.uk, (2014). The Coventry We Have Lost: Historical picture postcards of Coventry throughout the ages. [online] Available at: http://www.thecoventrywehavelost.co.uk

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The Binley Oak 1913 Hillfields Coventry Photograph


Broadgate from Hertford Street c1910 (Frederic Lewis)

images-1imgres-3Broadgate from Hertford Street

Corner of Hertford Street  (Teesee)




Hertford Street c1910 (Harvey Barton)



Forum.historiccoventry.co.uk, (2014). Historic Coventry Forum – Street view. [online] Available at: http://forum.historiccoventry.co.uk/extra/view_street.php?id=46&ret_row=BerryStreetc1970

My research related to the history of the location of the map in Coventry , I finished at this stage, now I have to wonder about a the subject of my photos and my presentation form .





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