The vast majority of photographic images on Flickr, the photo sharing site, tend to be predictable, conservative and repetitive in both form and content. As a consequence they do not fit easily in the standard art historical narrative that is still focused, however anxiously and insecurely, on modernism's Romantic ideas of originality, innovation and individualism.
So they are routinely excluded by the art institution as the detritus or junk of mass culture--- the antithesis of romantic originality and creativity that is so prized by art history. The Romantic idea is one of the artist as an independent creator rather than a skilled craftsperson; one who creates an art work that is original and exclusive, which the modernist art institution exhibited in a white cube gallery, which is then experienced in terms of a specific aesthetic judgment along Kantian lines.
It is true that photographs typically remain secondary as we continue to enact a hierarchy that places words above pictures and locates the written word at the centre of our critical thinking about our visual culture.
Could we not think with photos when they are a picturing of place? Think with photos in terms of what goes around the photograph as well as what takes place within it, even when they are commonplaces. After all our visual commonplaces or pictorial conventions are often containers of memory and embody history.
Though I have lived in many cities in both New Zealand and Australia Adelaide is my home and it has been so for severl decades. It is a place I know even though I have not known it from childhood like Christchurch in New Zealand. I knew Christchurch in a bodily way, where my tacit knowledge and understanding was built up slowly from an accretion of bodily memories over time.
I know Adelaide differently to Melbourne. I know Melbourne from working on the trams for several years --my body has a sense of the urban rhythms of the inner city. Adelaide is different. It's more a sense of fragmented memories of different sounds, the way the light shaped a building during the different seasons, the intensity of the summer heat, walking the dogs and so on.