Meet Me in the Square: Christchurch 1983–1987

Meet Me in the Square: Christchurch 1983–1987

David Cook

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, 2014, 180 pp., $49.95

Reviewed by David Eggleton for Landfall Review Online

9 December 2015

 Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu
David Cook Meet Me in the Square 978

David Cook’s photo-book Meet Me in the Square: Christchurch 1893–1987 is also a kind of social anatomy, an exhilarating exercise in ethnography as well as a historic document, put together as a personal response to the devastations caused by the earthquake season of 2010–12. A return to his hometown of Christchurch from Hamilton in the aftermath of the February 22 earthquake of 2011, and the sight of the city centre cordoned off into the red zone, half-buried under an accumulation of rubble and fallen brickwork, spurred him into going through his archive of black-and-white photographs, made as a project to document the city when he was an art student at Ilam in the 1980s. He sought to ‘rebuild’ his version of the city from his long-shelved negatives, proof-sheets and prints. This resulting book was produced by Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, in conjunction with a gallery exhibition of the photographs in Christchurch in early 2015.

Read full review at Landfall Review Online