The series was taken inside a squat lead by the Mancunian collective LooseSpace at the former Cornerhouse in Manchester in 2017. The Cornerhouse was launched in 1985 to promote the visual arts. It was considered to be the heart of popular culture until its closure and abandonment in 2015. During two months of occupation the collective organised several workshops and debates to create a space of artistic production, interaction and free exchange. I came to know LooseSpace only few weeks before police announced its final eviction. LooseSpace organized a final party to celebrate the end of its adventure. I used photography as a tool to trace details and narratives from the squatting experience. I employed the photoelicitation technique that consists in the use of photographs as a device for interviewing the subjects directly involved in the situations shown in the pictures. Thanks to this kind of interview, it is possible to track considerations that would be otherwise untold.
1. “Big Dan and Chris. Some of the main people who make Loose Space possible. I think it’s really important to underline that they were on the roof. The roof was my favourite place. Every time I was up there I was thinking: this is going to be my last cigarette? On the day bailiffs came down and they officially said we should leave… we all recognize that the squat was going to end. Yes, the roof and the view you can get from the roof is the representation of that”.
2.“We would always do communal food; this is an example of it. I’ve just cooked for everybody who was there at the time. The only problem was we always undercooked. There are many vegans so the ingredients we use are selective. And I don’t think in the Cornerhouse we managed to feed everybody every single day”
3. “This artwork reminds me about the window to get out to the Cornerhouse roof. The window was constantly fussing. It was almost falling apart all the time. By the end of the party it was completely broken... but somehow it is still working... a perfect metaphor for Loose Space”.
4.“You see this red window? There was actually a reason why we painted it... It was not just to decorate it, officially bailiffs cannot smash windows if they can’t see through it, or know what is happening behind. So we painted it and we took the chance to add the Loose Space Logo on it”.
5. “When we arrived to the ex Cornerhouse cinema we decided to take off some of the chairs. The ground was full of holes then, so we had to put the carpet over the missing chairs. You can see the circle, this is the hole and everybody were jumping and walking on it in the middle of the night, dancing on this. People were tripping over it. I was scared that someone could get hurt”.
6. “Oh... the Rabbit Hole last night... Oh.... The night was... oh, god! [sighs]. This was going to be the end of the Rabbit Hole, the final event. We changed the letters of the Cornerhouse and create ‘the Rabbit Hole’ because we knew that just in front, outside, in the Palace Theatre, there was a commercial of Alice in Wonderland show.”