Emer Gillespie

Artist + Photographer
Two Homes
Location: Brighton
Nationality: Irish
Biography: Emer Gillespie (b. 1980, Cork) is an Irish artist, currently living in Brighton in the UK. Graduating with an MA in Photography from the London College in Communication in 2009, her work is personal in nature, examining issues around motherhood,... read on
Public Story
Two Homes
Credits: emer gillespie
Updated: 08/10/10
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Emer Gillespie

Two Homes

To bring out the best in parents, we must leave them full responsibility with regard to what is their own affair; the upbringing of their own family”

D.H. Winnicott


Two Homes has evolved from my ongoing interest in domesticated life. As a single parent, I found most of my photography was revolving around my home and daughter, as it was not easy to pop out of the house to photograph. The more I observed my immediate world, the more I began to realize things as a parent.

This series expands beyond my own house and into my daughter’s homes. I began to explore her father’s home, which although very familiar to her, was unknown to me. What emerges from these domestic diptychs are the subtle differences between the two households. Although similar in structure and style, I began to notice gender differences, and how simple tasks are undertaken by each parent. Each home fulfills its basic objectives, eating, sleeping, and playing, but how they are carried out, and the physical differences between the two houses are apparent. 

The family is a perpetually evolving entity in which relationships grow and shrink, develop and dissolve, strengthen and dissipate. More than a quarter of households in the UK are single parent homes. The belief that this means a breakdown of the functional family unit is losing its validity. A wave of positive and stable alternative families is challenging the perception that unconventional is equated to dysfunctional. My separation was a reorganization, not an end, to my family. These images are an exploration into the validation of this personal argument.


By Emer Gillespie —

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