The Shed was Our Spaceship was created with a group of children in Manchester, which inhabits a realm of childhood imagination. The title quotes a letter written by Longman to the house she grew up in, a reflection on becoming older and wanting one more chance to live her childhood memories. The shed was our spaceship captures daydreamed visions of innocence and play, staging interactions between the children before the camera. Gestures of performance reflect on the nostalgia of earlier years, as the viewer peers into an imagined world.
Something lost, Something familiar is the first volume of an ongoing project, in which Hayleigh Longman traces the edges of her relationship with her mother. The ebbs and flows of their relationship are connected with the tree in the back garden, which Longman’s mother routinely cuts back to stop it from blocking the sunlight. Longman relates this intervention with nature to a feeling of only being able to get so far with her mother, before getting lost again. With the garden as their stage, mother and daughter are enmeshed in acts of mirroring and concealment, working through the maintenance of roots and growing distance that pulls together, and apart, their bond.