“The photographer is always trying to colonize new experiences or find new ways to look at familiar subjects.”

— Diane Arbus.

The signs of Hurricane Harvey’s arrival in August 2017 are still present all around the Houston area, with the X-code signs being familiar to most people along the Gulf Coast. Diane Arbus comments about photographers always trying new ways of looking at familiar subjects really resonates with me .


De Ferrier. X codes La Grange, Texas

I have just enrolled in the MA photography at Falmouth. One of the key requirements for the course is to create a critical research journal which captures research, images, thoughts and project development. This is my first attempt at a CRJ so I am not really quite sure how this will turn out, but I am sure it will be helpful to document my journey through the MA. I feel this will be a great place to reflect on my week to week readings and research.

La Grange, Texas: August 2019

My current practice was concerned with diaspora and gentrification. The images included here are houses in La Grange, Texas and are some of many that were under water when Hurricane Harvey hit in August 2017. These photographs were taken in August 2019 and I find the lack of progress disturbing. On the windows, you will see a spray painted sign which is called an X code. This is a code that describes who searched the house, at what time, in addition to the total number of people and bodies found within the building.

One thing that I am certain of is that I will not be defined by what happened, I will be defined by my practice. Susan Sontag mentioned “This photograph, like any photograph” Godard and Gorin point out “is physically mute. It talks through the mouth of the text beneath it.” and it is for this reason going forward, that my work may only contain a title.

De Ferrier. X codes La Grange, Texas


Sontag, S. (2014). On Photography. New York, NY: Picador [u.a.].