Polish family, Loughborough, England | 1976. (Picture: Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn (Matka Boska Ostrobramska).)
Czesław Siegieda – Photographer
Czesław Siegieda, born the son of Polish immigrants to England in Leicestershire in 1954, showed an interest in photography from an early age. From his teens he photographed the Polish community he grew up in, moving through fêtes and funerals with an ease only available to an insider.
For many years the archive remained private, initially out of respect for the sensitivities of his parents’ generation: nervous of their position as ‘guests’ in a foreign land, they were determined not to draw attention to themselves. This initial impulse of discretion soon gave way to the more prosaic demands of life and work. For decades the negatives sat unheeded in a drawer until, in 2018, two years after his mother’s death, Siegieda began to publish his work online, drawing the attention of notable photographers such as Martin Parr and Mark Power.
“I am a missionary when it comes to the value of documentary photography and h