Tourist Photography: Performance, memory and narrative paper presentation at the International Visual Sociology Association Conference, University of British Columbia, Canada (6-8 July) by Theopisti Stylianou-Lambert and Chrystalleni Loizidou (VSMSLab, CUT)
Tourist Photography: Performance, Memory and Narrative is a one-year project, which began in January 2011. The data collection stage has just been completed. The project explores the relationship between photography and memory, the reasons why tourists take photographs, and how they choose to represent the places they visit as well as themselves. As a study of vernacular photography it is an examination of the modes of production of these images, of their consumption, and of the types of exchange these entail. To this end, it attempts to develop a framework for the analysis of vernacular tourist photography with regard to its narrative content with attention to the event-sequences such photographs may refer to, but also the narrative contexts of vernacular tourist photography, or the scenarios (emotional, informative or other) within which such images are brought to feature by their users. In short, this study examines not only the ways in which these images can be read, but also (a) the variety of motivations and rituals around their production, (b) the stories they are weaved into subsequently, and (c) their use and value as artefacts.