Cigarette Break is a series of analogue medium format photographs by Thomas Westwell. Inspired by Henri Lefebvre’s writings about the social production of spaces, this series examines how people is shaped and shape the spaces within the city. It documents how conceived spaces are socially appropriated by the city's workers and reclaimed for their own lived purpose.
Through this series, Tom Westell catalogues sites that people use as a method of urban escape in the form of simple cigarette breaks. In this action, workers escape the anxiety and alienation generated by the fast paced and impersonal modern city. Through the act of smoking, they reclaim a moment of tranquility and associate that environment with the feeling of calm that it generates during their working day.
Thomas Westwell is a conceptually driven photographic artist based in Hampshire, UK. His photographic practice was built upon a process of theorising about the human relationship to space, and worked by producing documentations of these spaces. Through his practice he looks to understand how through interaction we both shape and are shaped by the environments we navigate.
Thomas Westwell holds a BA Hons in Photography from the University of Portsmouth and has been part of several group shows in the UK.