Hand Me Over Hand Me Downs

Hand me over hand me downs - Hunan Spring 1998 © Annabel Stockman

24 May - 31 August 2014

This display examines the UK's international adoption policies, focusing on adoption from China. Taking artist Annabel Stockman's photographic project Hand Me Over Hand Me Downs as inspiration, it centres around the moment an adoptive child joins their new family.

Annabel Stockman started Hand Me Over Hand Me Downs after she and her husband adopted their two children. Her images document the clothes, toys, keepsakes and good luck charms that their children, and 71 others, owned and brought with them as they started their new lives in the UK. Their possessions reflect the culture and traditions of their previous homes, the relationships they had with their carers, and the fears or hopes of those carers. In many cases these items are the strongest connection the families have to that important moment, so memorable to the adults but unknown to the child too young to remember.

73 images from Hand Me Over Hand Me Downs will be displayed alongside the clothing and possessions of one child and the stories of adoptive families recalling the events and emotions of that important day.




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