Home - T Singapore

An Interiors Photographer Shares His Favourite Images of the Decade

By Merrell Hambleton

 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

The interiors photographer Simon Watson looks back on his most memorable images of the past ten years. Here: “The artist Guillermo Santoma’s house in Barcelona. Dining room looking into hallway. 2015.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Umberto Pasti and Stephan Janson’s apartment in Milan. Entrance Hall. 2014.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“My wife Christine bathing my two youngest children. Matilda on the right with red cheeks and Hugo on the left. My house in Dublin. 2017.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Looking up at a house in Asilah, Morocco. 2019.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur, Rajasthan India. 2016.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“My assistant Adam Hoff beside a Mexican lady in a building in Merida, Mexico. 2016.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“A salon room in Lakshmi Palace in Baroda, Gujarat India. 2017.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Piano nobile floor in 12 Henrietta Street, a Georgian house in Dublin. 2018.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“A couple on a scooter in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India, 2016.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“My back garden in early spring. Dublin, 2014.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Taroudant city walls. Taroudant, Morocco. 2013.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Claudio Bravo’s garden in Taroudant Morocco. 2013.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“My beautiful wife, my raison d’être. Christine Watson. 2011.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“Nicola del Roscio’s garden in Gaeta, Italy. 2015.”

/
 
Back to Article Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“The Wicklow Laocoön, Powerscourt House, Co. Wicklow Ireland. Circa 2010. This is a 19th century replica of the incredible Roman statue dug up in Rome in the late 15th century. Now in the Vatican.”

/
 
Simon Watson’s Photographs of Italian Gardens and Moroccan Fortresses

“A scene from a recent drive in County Galway, Connemara, west coast of Ireland. 2019.”

/

As a young man, the Irish photographer Simon Watson thought he’d like to be a painter. Today, his affinity for that medium is still evident in many of his photographs. His portraits and interior images, especially, suggest the influence of Northern Renaissance painters. “I choose lenses based on how van Eyck would see something,” Watson says of the Dutch artist. “I’m a big fan of side window light and I love depth and darkness. I guess that’s a little more Vermeer-y.” As a photographer for this magazine, Watson has turned a painterly eye to 12th-century Austrian castlesBrutalist German factories and 19th-century Irish tenements. For each story, Watson says, he tries to find “a sort of penumbra — the light between dark and bright — where the image comes alive. I like to embrace light as it falls. I’m not afraid of the shadows.”

Watson’s work regularly takes him to far-flung locations — this year alone, he travelled to BeirutItalyAustria and Morocco — and so he is used to changes of place. Still, the last 10 years, during which he remarried, had two children, and ended a 25-year stretch in New York to return to his native Dublin, represent a seismic shift. In the selection of his images above, which include photographs taken on assignment and at home over the past 10 years, new textures and tones reflect the move. “I’m much more aware of seasons and nature here,” he says of life in Ireland. “I go for long walks on the weekend; I’m a member of three different botanical gardens.” Intimate images of his family life — bath time with his kids, a dusk outing with his wife, the photographer Christine Lebeck Watson, on Ireland’s wild west coast — taken with an iPhone, are woven in, too. “It’s not just a fancy interior here, an important person there,” says Watson, reflecting on the last decade and the photographs that represent it. “What’s important in my life now, I suppose, are the moments that I have.”