Photography Colin Dodgson

photographer colin dodgson invites the public into his childhood home for a new exhibit

The i-D collaborator returns to Oxnard, California for 'Open House,' starting September 1.

by Jack Sunnucks
30 August 2019, 1:53pm

Photography Colin Dodgson

“How can you live with your own work, how could you live with yourself?” This is the question posed by photographer Colin Dodgson’s new exhibition, which in fact takes place in his childhood home in Oxnard, California, presenting a novel way to answer the question. Dodgson now owns the property, just minutes from the beach, and retreats there when he needs some headspace. “I live here off and on throughout the year, when I’m not in London,” he says over the phone from the house. “To get some headspace. And having any sort of space is a premium! Coming home here feeds into how I think about my work, so I thought it would be quite interesting to do something like this.”

It’s perhaps no surprise that Dodgson hails from sleep Oxnard — his work shares with the town a tranquility sorely missing from London, or his previous home of New York. This show is no different in that its a sun-drenched contemplation of themes he holds dear. “Some of the work is specifically about the sense of home. Some have a sense of nostalgia.” In particular, there’s one of a Ren & Stimpy VHS that speaks to him growing up. “We found it recently in the garage. That’s been installed by where the TV I used to watch it on was. Everything is interrelated in that sense.”

Dodgson makes the majority of his work in London, where there’s enough space for him to maintain a dark room and studio (unlike New York where this would in all likelihood be impossible). Part of the show includes an installation of wind information logged throughout the year, as” When I come home to California the first thing I tend to do is check the waves, and see what the wind is doing. Something a bit more tangible than if you live in a city.” The best thing about Oxnard that isn’t the beach? “There’s maybe the world’s best dive bars! It’s called the Rudder Room. It’s very real, and one of the very few places you can take your drink onto the beach, all the way down to the water.” So, still about the beach then. “ I think that comes from being a kid here, having friends and surfing. You live so close to the beach, it’s part of your life every day.”

To visit Colin's 'Open House,' from September 2 2019 - February 16 2020, email

fashion photography
colin dodgson