London School of Photography Blog

Exhibition: MARTIN PARR AT TATE MODERN

Tags: , , , , , , , Boiler House, Britain, documentary photography, Exhibition, Magnum Photos, Martin Parr, Serpentine Gallery, Tate Modern

With photography, I like to create fiction out of reality. I try and do this by taking society’s natural prejudice and giving this a twist – Martin Parr 

You just gotta love Martin Parr. His unique, over-saturated, daylight flash-blasted photos are brimming with humour, innuendo and curious details that have put him up there with the likes of Gary Winogrand 

 Tate Modern is exhibiting photographs taken by Parr in New Brighton, a beach suburb of Liverpool. The Last resort, is a series of 40 photographs taken using a medium format camera between 1983 and 1985, during a period of economic decline in northwest England.  

According to the gallery, the photos were taken at a seaside resort past its prime with attractions designed to appeal to an economically depressed working class: overcrowded beaches, video arcades, beauty competitions, tea rooms and chip shops. 

The series, that was exhibited at the Serpentine Gallery in  London and published as a book in 1986, cemented Parr’s reputation as a photographer.  

“Traditionally, documentary photography in Britain sought to glorify the working class,” a press release read.  

“Here Parr shows a warts-and-all picture of a down-at-heel resort populated by day trippers seeking cheap thrills. The series contains many images of people dressed in the day-glo lycra fashions of the time, eating junk food in the crumbling remains of a seaside town.”  

Parr said about his work: “I’m less interested in the fact that these people aren’t well off financially as in the fact that they have to deal with screaming kids, like anyone has to … I’m also interested in making the photographs work on another level, showing how British society is decaying; how this once great society is falling apart.”  

MARTIN PARR AT TATE MODERN
UNTIL 3 DECEMBER 2018
BOILER HOUSE LEVEL 4 EAST 

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