Second Sight - 1977

Submitted by root on Tue, 07/25/2017 - 11:45

Second Sight was the Blackie's Summer Theatre in 1977.  It was inspired by 1971's Summer theatre  Gifts To A City  but focused on photography.

As in previous years the people who ran Second Sight also worked on playschemes around the City.  In this instance they worked on 4 playschemes playing photographic games based on Silhouettes.

The Idea  

Second Sight was about using photography to get people to look again. This ranged from highlighting specific parts of the City environment to using photography to comment on the objects and people    

How it worked

It came in two parts - part 1 consisted of events which took place around the City; part 2 of photographic games played with young people at 4 different playschemes. 

In terms of the city events we have photographs of some of the them and descriptions of some of the games but at this time we do not know exactly how many of the ideas actually took place (the original intention was to do 8/9 events;  in what order they too place;  or a complete list of the people who created them. 

For the games played with young people we have no photographs but do have detailed descriptions of the games and how they worked and details of where and when they took place.

The Events

Postcards of Casey Street

Photographs were taken of buildings in Casey Street and printed as postcards.  These were then attached either to the building photographed or to somewhere in Casey street where there was a good view of the building photographed.

Postcard on Timpson's window'Postcard' on Stag menswearCouple looking at the 'postcard' on Walkers Pub

Above 'Postcards' on buildings in Casey Street - these are only really visible in the large version of the photo

The Contents Become The Outside.

Photographs were taken of the contents - so the inside of phone boxes, rubbish bins, flower beds. 
Photograph of the flowers in a flower trough Photo of flowers in a flower troughPhoto of the inside of a rubbish binThe contents of a phone box

These photographs were then blown up and fixed to the outside of the street furniture of which they were the inside.

Above photos of the contents and below the containers covered with photos of the contents - sadly we do not have one of the phone box.

Rubbish bin covered in photos of rubbishFlower trough covered in photos of flowersFlower troughs covered in photos of flowers







Whilst there is a clear idea of how this was supposed to work no-one appears to know if it actually happened and there are certainly no photos to illustrate it.

Take photos of singular items - print them the same size as the original and then place the photo next to the original objet to create twins.

Below are some of the photos of objects that were taken to be used for this event.

Photo for TwinsPhoto of shop sign for TwinsPhoto of potential Twin objectPhoto of potential twin object


Close-up of surface textures which are then blown up, pasted on card and positioned in front of or next to  the actual textured surfaces.

Example of a textured surfaceExample of a textured surface photo

Above photos of textured surfaces.  Below photos of the Texture works being put into position and in situ

Putting up the texture PhotosPositioning the texture photosPutting the texture photos in postiionPositioning the texture photosA texture photo in positionTexture photo in positionExample of a textured surface in situ


The team took a lot of photos of chimneys in all their diversity.

Below some of the photos of chimneys

Photo of ChimneysPhotos of chimneys Photo of chimneys

These were then printed and mounted on board and displayed on easels which were then exhibited in Williamson Square.

Below the Chimneys on exhibition in Williamson SquareThe chimneys on exhibitionThe chimneys on display in Williamson SquareThe chimneys on exhibit The chimneys on exhibition 

Lightening Sketches

This consisted of people making quick sketches of street scenes which were then exhibited. What they sketched and where they exhibited are at this time unknown.

Below members of the team making Lightning Sketches

members of the team making Lightning Sketchesmembers of the team making Lightning Sketches 


The paper work does not have a complete list of the team which created Second Sight or indeed of the companies and people who helped with gifts and donations - so the following is what we know at this time - anyone with any information please contact us.

The Team

Second Sight was lead by Judy Bates (now Gough) with assistance from  Duncan Curtis, Tessa Chisholm, Martyn Kember-Smith; Stephen Knox; Howard Steel  Rie Toft Hansen plus Alison and Vicki,

Thanks To

Owen Owens for the loan of display boards.  And to those whose names we do not at this time have.