Philip Arneill is a documentary photographer and educator who spent 20 years living and working in Tokyo, and is now based in Ireland. He is interested in pursuing autobiography, and the illusory notions of home and belonging, by examining...
This work is a visual scrapbook: a meditation on flight, travel, and memory.
I have travelled to more countries than I ever could have imagined in the last 25 years. While the days of the perforated boarding pass were already numbered, it took the more or less complete closure of airports in March 2020 to realise how much regular flights had become part of normal life for many of us, especially for those used to living overseas.
The weathered passport, in a colour no longer de rigeur in the post-Brexit UK,
Inadvertently stored, now fading boarding passes - some barely legible - are testament to the one-time ubiquity of flight in my life, represented also by photos from just some of my travels; memories once vivid, gradually decolourising in my mind's eye.
In August, after 5 months of restrictions I finally visited (not to fly, only photograph) the somewhat surreal landscape of Dublin Airport's Terminal 2 and its surrounding fields, once so familiar, now eerily empty and shuttered, even since the resumption of international flights.
The most recent smartphone-friendly boarding passes are from the final flights I took in the 6 months before the lockdown in Ireland. In 2020 alone I had already flown 7 times in blissful, pre-Covid ignorance.