A 1: BoW – Beginnings.

22nd July 2020

This is where we continue to start – or almost start. I am re-reading ‘The Birth of the Clinic’ by Michael Foucault as prep for my final year (Focault, 1996). I have been taking photography of my denuded surgery and am reminded about his comments that it is the ‘spaces’ between that define different infections and illnesses. I think these also apply to my empty corridors – we now see our patients in the car-park due to Covid-19 or in full PPE or on line or by phone. There is something of absence and war as in the images of Roger Fenton (Photoman, 2010). Someone mentioned the idea of ‘psycho-geography’ a few weeks ago. It seems to be about how place affects affect but maybe I should investigate that.

I am due to leave as a leader of my surgery in 5 weeks time. I will have a break and then come back after a few months to work for one instead of 4 days a week. I have been taking photographs during Covid, not in any systematic way, documenting my day when home consulting or in the surgery alongside a smaller group of professionals than usual. At the back of my mind is the seminal photo-documentary and essay by Eugene Smith about Dr. Ernest Ceriani in Kremmling, Colorado “The generalist was the lone physician serving a Rocky Mountain enclave that covered 400 square miles” (Smith, 1948). I am not sure that I want to replicate this or update it with my concept of ‘GP-Land.’ I think that I am looking for something more interior.

I am pretty exhausted by working a lot. I have many ideas but I need some breathing space to think and make progress.


Foucault, M. (1996). The Birth of the Clinic: An Archaeology of Medical Perception. Oxford, Vintage; Reprint edition (1 May 1996).

Photoman, M. (2010). “Roger Fenton – the first war photographer. http://sluggerotoole.com/2010/11/07/roger-fenton-the-first-war-photographer-2/.” Retrieved 1st August, 2016, from 1st August, 2016.

Smith, E. (1948). “‘Country Doctor’: W.Eugen Smith’s landmark photo essay. https://www.life.com/history/w-eugene-smiths-landmark-photo-essay-country-doctor/.” Retrieved 22nd July, 2020.