Jem Raid self portrait figurative video artist

Home Biography Influences Contact Links

Back Alley

Please use headphones for the best quality sound.

This is my take on the Back Alley made from lots of images taken in one in Nottinghamshire. It is part nightmare part hopeful of overcoming its own shortcomings as a place to live and work. It's a place that most people walk past without a second glance and there it stays melded into the local community, in equal measures a dump for rubbish, a home for those who live at the back or above shops and businesses and a shortcut for those who live adjacent to it. Unkempt for the most part, bits added to the rear of the buildings that front the main road with utility uppermost in the minds of both the builders and the commissioners.

My work is figurative and I am the figure, from anonymous to revealed, like the inhabitants of the alley. Some slink by, some say hello, some ask what I do, others scowl, some smile knowingly. The alley is a microcosm of human activity in the fashion of a village.

And yet for me it was a gold mine of the unexpected, of textures and rubbish that form abstract patterns when isolated by my camera, making a canvas for the montaged introduction of a figure.

As I progressed through the making of the video I began to wonder about the end and what I could do to finish it. Some stones in a sort of oval shape half buried in the dust gave me the clue.

As an older male posing in feminine mode I seek to overcome the sexist and ageist attitudes I often encounter. I make the photographs, I pose for the figurative images, use various software programs to create my videos and creates my own audio tracks.

The video is 5 minutes long in 16:9 format.

The video is in HD 720p 1280 x 720
Also available in FHD 1080p 1920 x 1080


Art in Dream Project, Šiauliai, Lithuania 1st to 31st January

USB Shuffle Show, Berlin, Germany January 27th - 28th 2017