Cambridge School of Art

Degree Show Website

Mary Humphrey
(click image to enlarge)

I am a photographer who embraces challenges. For the past two years I have been involved with photographing Roma, Gypsies and Travellers.

My aim as a photographer was and still is to invite the viewer to look and look again. Initially my intent was to discover and relate information about these marginalised communities. I wanted their photographs to tell their stories. I am a collaborative photographer who relishes working with people, where relationships are established and maintained. Working amongst the different groups I became involved with the broader issues that surround them. My continued intent is to present information within the frames, but also to instigate questions that arise about their past, their present way of life, and their impact on today’s society and their future. Much suspicion and folk lore continue to surround these groups; what is the reality?

I want their portraitures to capture the essence of their identity, namely their inherent resilience, dignity and pride. I want their confident, strong personalities to be exposed by their uninhibited gazes when faced with a camera.

This challenging process has made an impact on my development as a photographer. I want my photography to make a difference.


20 Responses for “Mary Humphrey”

  1. Graham Says:

    May 27th, 2011 at 8:17 am

    Dear Mary,
    The aspect of your comments that I can particularly relate to after viewing these is where you state your intention to “instigate questions that arise about their past, their present way of life, and their impact on today’s society and their future.”

    Without having read the comments first I would have come to the same conclusion myself. Thanks for sharing this with me.


  2. Margaret Greenfields Says:

    May 31st, 2011 at 8:23 am

    Mary these are wonderfully evocative images which move beyond the stereotypical views of downtrodden Roma people – and show the reality of their lives -albeit in somewhat bleak material circumstances – whilst not imposing any single opinion about the people themselves on the viewer. Well done and many thanks for sharing these wonderful photographs

  3. Mary Humphrey Says:

    June 2nd, 2011 at 6:46 am

    Graham thank you for your comments. I am delighted that these images instigated questions about issues surrounding the Roma.

  4. Mary Humphrey Says:

    June 2nd, 2011 at 6:52 am

    Margaret thank you for your understanding comments. I certainly hope that this body of work will relate the unique story and circunstances of the Roma today.

  5. Sumita Fleming Says:

    June 3rd, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Beautiful balance of colour and texture, Mary. The photos have a painting-like quality to them. Are the people you have portrayed, “in their life” or “outside of it”? Your photos hold the moment, very quietly and strongly. Mary, you really have an incredible eye as well as a feel for your subjects, who in turn WANT to be seen by you!

  6. Mary Humphrey Says:

    June 8th, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Sumita, thank you for your discerning question and kind comments.

  7. Josh H Says:

    June 23rd, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Truely amazing Mrs H. Incredible work.

  8. Mary Humphrey Says:

    July 3rd, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Thank you Josh!

  9. Tony Gardiner Says:

    March 28th, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    hi Mary
    Earthy stuff, gets to the heart, loved image 7 the gipsy girl and image 3 horse and cart utterly brilliant, well done, behind the lens the girls got class !!!!

  10. Mary Humphrey Says:

    April 20th, 2012 at 9:41 pm

    Thank you for your kind comments Tony. You have mentioned two of my favourite images.

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