Stanley "Tom" Durrell, Tinsmith
Lockhart’s film Lunch Break investigates the present state of American labor, through a close look at the everyday life of the workers at the Bath Iron Works shipyard—a private sector of the U.S. naval shipbuilding company—in Maine. Stanley “Tom” Durrell, Tinsmith (2008) belongs to a group of portrait-like photographs of the shipyard’s workers lunchboxes. Created over the period of a year, Lockhart’s film and accompanying still photographs are intended as an exploration of the social spaces inside this kind of workplace. At the turn of the nineteenth century, the factory was an emblem for the American way of life; today, those same factories and an entire generation of the working class seem on the verge of disappearance as a result of political and economic global capitalism.
Sharon Lockhart is both a filmmaker and a photographer, and she moves seamlessly between the two. All of her work, regardless of medium, offers a prolonged investigation of the subject at hand. The artist’s almost anthropological sensibility leads her to spend months, even years, working with the same community, whether in Bath, Maine, or Lodz, Poland, resulting in provocative and thorough studies of people and places.