Michael Hess: Bingo and Social Club Book

Michael Hess was an Irish-born American lawyer, deputy chief legal counsel and later chief legal counsel to the Republican National Committee.

  Using a bingo hall as an inspiration is a rare direction in the world of photography. Fortunately, Michael Hess has done the unthinkable, compiling all of his photographs of the famous bingo halls in the United Kingdom. Michael thought of weaving these canvasses into a 112-page book – the Bingo and Social Book. The book tries to highlight the normally secretive retail halls in a deeper perspective, characterized by strong characters, warm visual renderings, and architectural views. Drawing the Inspiration Hess was deeply inspired by the idea of giving gaming halls a brand new perspective, as opposed to being a social degeneration in the society. In this modern age, online bingo portals are the ones spearheading this creative mindset. CheekyBingo.com suggests that we must search for new ways to make the game even more exciting. Thus, if you’re planning to venture on bingo hall photography such as Hess then you might want to consider in finding creative ways to do so. This will increase the fun and excitement bought by the game.

 

  Playing the Game Even before the idea of producing this book materialized, Hess has always been fascinated by the architecture of gaming kiosks, which are located on every British high street. Until this day, some of these halls are still standing firm, such as the Heaton Bingo & Social Club, Welbeck Bingo Club, and the Orion Bingo Club in Newcastle. His first game was eight years ago in an abandoned cinema. When he entered the place, he was just staring at the people, while his friend, Maxine Gallagher, has scored £15 ($24). Backbone of the book

Hess claims that every photo has a different story to narrate. But the best portrait from the collection was of a 1960’s looking man, which served as the backbone of his masterpiece. Shot in Flutter Bingo Club in Biggleswade, the man was seating comfortably in the foreground, while staring at the giant number board, where the drawn bingo numbers are listed. The final shot also bore witness to the old folk’s gaming cards, gaming table, and the bingo roulette.

The Challenge Along with the process, Hess saw a dramatic change in the number of players, which is a result of the smoking ban implemented in the betting halls. But after four years, the book still came into being, covering more than 70 gaming halls. Today, Hess’ book is being exhibited at the Host Gallery in London.

 

 

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