Sunday, February 06, 2011

time travel now

A database of old photographs from the Sydney police spanning the first half of the nineteenth century (1912-1965) has caught my fancy. There is a very brief description of each photograph as written at the time they were taken. It's really interesting...they're vignettes from the past with no explanation as to why the police took these pictures. One imagines that each of them was probably something they were called to--there are deaths, and falls and burglaries. The one above I found particularly captivating. The caption reads simply:
Abortion instruments, Sydney City Central.

The photographs are strangely beautiful and you find yourself inventing stories to go with them--why is the chair overturned? Who was killed? Were there children left behind? It's like time traveling for a voyeur and I wasted at least an hour on it today.


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