Ordinariness – Nicolas Barker

In mijn onderzoek kom ik ook terug op één van mijn vroegste bronnen Nicolas Barker. Ik heb er een fotoboek van. Waarin hij singles in New York volgt. Je mag ze, hebt met ze te doen en vindt ze tegelijkertijd afschuwelijk en onvolwassen. Het boek bleek een naslag op een documentaire. Het gaat mij vooral over de storytelling, de opbouw, de diverse kwaliteiten van beeld en tekst, bewegend en stilstaand beeld én het voyeuristische gehalte van het materiaal in Unmade beds. De hoofdpersonen geven meer prijs dan zij denken. Profiel bij Rogue Film beschrijft hem zo: Barker is the creator of masterful miniatures of understatement. His extraordinary ability to distil something quirky from ordinariness.  Nicholas is trained as an anthropologist before joining the BBC as a radio producer. Created ‘Washes Whiter’, ‘Signs of the Times’ (the hilarious and harrowing chronicle of family relationships posing as a study of home decorating), and ‘From A to B’ (the infamous study of people and their cars). The latter two mini-series rapidly gained cult status and heralded a new genre in British documentary making, perfectly demonstrating his idiosyncratic visual style and caustic sense of humour. Playing fast and loose with documentary conventions, Barker gives us an often hilarious, sometimes poignant horror story, walking a line between sophisticated genre busting and sneery cheap shot.  Nicholas’s film, Unmade Beds, received much critical acclaim and picked up numerous awards on the festival circuit. Furter: Sunday Lunch and Centraal Beheer Cleaning Ladies and online Tokyo Dreams, a Zen-like film about sleeping commuters on the Tokyo subway. He practices guerrilla gardening on Hampstead Heath.


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