Service Station Portraits


Ellen Melville Centre • 31 May - 13 June

Hrs 9 - 5 daily, Wed after 1pm
2 Freyberg Place, Auckland Central, Auckland 1010
Paul Batt

This series represents the documentation of the self-reflective moments on the faces of individuals at the service station below my old apartment between 2006-08. The transitory nature of a service station means that patrons don’t arrive there as such. The customer’s intention is their immanent departure and the purpose of their arrival. This nature of not being an intended destination or in a sense a ‘non place’, gives a melancholy to people’s habitation of it as their minds are elsewhere. It was these brief moments of people alone without their public facade, which spoke to me of the human condition. It was these looks that made me wonder whether it was possible to document them and whether I could make a portrait of somebody I don’t know, which also subtly reflected them.
Paul Batt is an Australian artist and academic. Batt has lectured in photography at PSC, RMIT and Monash Universites and as well as written for magazines such as Photofile. As an artist Batt has exhibited expensively around Australia and overseas, while his work is held in significant public collections such as the Monash Gallery of Art (MGA).


Untitled #1, 2006 (Service Station Portraits 2006-2008)

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