Exhibition / 1 Oct – 31 Oct 2021

It’s Hard to Report a Stolen Bike, Stolen

Nik Roche

It’s Hard to Report a Stolen Bike, Stolen is a further chapter to The Budgie Died Instantly. This work initially emerged from lived experience and childhood memories but then, through a series of chance encounters, became an exploration of friendship, conflict, humour and humanity. It looks at relationships, acceptance and trust within a closely self-guarded community. A place where utopian desires exist in windows decorated with flowers and pride fronting forbidden spaces behind closed doors that hang full of lost innocence and diminishing dreams.

Kept within a cycle of deprivation — not necessarily of wealth, but of information and alternative realities — this is an intimate, visceral portrait of people whose lives are caught in oscillation between incarceration and freedom.

The intimacy of these images offers insight to the conflict of possibility and reality and the elusive moments of hope that lie in between. Nostalgic recollections and anecdotes of chaotic incidents interweave with alarming hilarity. A mirror on life’s complexities and the inherent need to survive at all costs in pursuit of belonging and love, this work reveals a community marred by enforced social marginalisation and outrage, where resilience and behavioural patterns remain unbroken against an assault of ill-considered mental-health care, trauma and lack of long-term systematic change.

Mutual trust and understanding are critical to sharing these moments in their lives. Standing on the sidelines is not an option.

About Artist

Portrait of Nik Roche

Nik Roche

b. 1970, Neath, South Wales

Nik discovered his passion for photography while pursuing a successful career in garden design, and is a recent graduate from the Documentary Photography MA at University of South Wales. Here, he has developed a highly immersive method for image making, shaped by his interest in social change and the impact of institutions on individual behaviour.

He has a very human approach to his work.

The budgie died instantly, his first monograph has been published by Setanta Books, 2020. He is currently working on the second chapter, It’s hard to report a stolen bike, stolen.