THE BOREHOLE - Tommy Hatwell

August 4 to 29, “The Borehole” will be on display in Tavistock Library, with a talk by Tommy sharing the story of the image on August 9th at 1 pm.

In July 2017 Devon photographer Tommy Hatwell left a 5 week trip in Uganda with a clear vision for what would be his largest and most logistically challenging group portrait so far. A year later returning to the same Ugandan community ready to put the plan into action, Tommy knew this wouldn’t be straight forward but with the help of his local team and a little bit of patience all of the elements came together. Over the next year Tommy processed the images into “The Borehole” and in early 2019 returned to share the print with the community and the 37 children at “The Borehole”.


Tavistock Library will host the first UK exhibition of “The Borehole” image From August 4 to 29. At over 2 meters wide you will come face to face with the 37 children who rely on the borehole every day for water and as a meeting point for socializing. Tommy created the image to encapsulate the daily relationships of the children to each other and the borehole alongside the technical and logistical challenge of creating the image, Tommy also wanted to make an image that showed the community of children that make it a place so close to his heart.


The project has evolved over 3 years and for the next stage of this Tommy would like to include the young community of Tavistock. When you drop into the library to view “The Borehole” you will also be able to write to one of the children in the image, ask a question, share a story, draw a picture or send a photo. Using the blank postcards and following the instructions that will be provided your postcard will be hand delivered directly to the young boy or girl you write too in January 2020, with a response returned for you to collect at the library in March. From August 4 to 29, “The Borehole” will be on display in Tavistock Library, with Tommy sharing the story of the image on August 9th at 1 pm.

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