Martin Parr opens gallery for UK documentary photographers

The Martin Parr Foundation, set up in 2014 to support and sustain the work of British documentary photographers, will open its brick and mortar location in Bristol next month. The architect-designed space in the Paintworks complex will be home to works from a wide range of British photographers – such as Keith Arnatt, Richard Billingham, Elaine Constantine, John Davies, Paul Graham, Ken Grant, and John Hinde – while also preserving the work of Parr himself, one of the most celebrated documentary photographers of the last 50 years.

The gallery’s first exhibition, Parr’s own Black Country Stories, will open on October 25 and run through to January 2018. That will be followed by Niall McDiarmid’s portraits project, Town to Town, before David Hurn’s Swaps – … Read the rest

Martin Parr’s visual ode to Scotland

Martin Parr has been taking pictures of Scotland for over 25 years now. As a result, the much-loved photographer has built an incredible body of work; capturing surreal scenes from all throughout the country.

Now, for the first time, these previously unpublished images are being shared in a new book. The publication, titled Think Of Scotland, aims to offer a new perspective on Scottish life, with Parr looking back affectionately at his travels through Glasgow, Orkney and Edinburgh.

Like much of Parr’s work, the book adds a twist to the country’s classic visual iconography – such as highland games and stunning landscapes – with the photographer reframing each image in a dry, dreamlike way. “I just explore people and things in society, not just in … Read the rest

The grit and glamour of cinematic Los Angeles

Julian Caldwell had a pretty fixed idea of what to expect from the city of his dreams: Cadillacs, palm trees and picture-perfect sunsets.

The 19-year-old British photographer saved enough money to spend a week there on a solo visit: half of that time changing bed sheets in youth hostels, half of it hitting the streets with a camera in hand.

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“It’s a place almost everyone feels familiar with on some level, from memories of films growing up or the music they listen to now,” he says.

“You quickly get the sense, however, that locals have to deal with this constant stream of visitors all searching for the stereotypical signifiers of the city, skimming over anything that doesn’t sit within their preconceived version.”

Those things were hard … Read the rest

Behind the scenes at America’s new legal cannabis farms

As the daughter of a pot farmer, Kristen Angelo practically grew up in a grow room. The Seattle-based photographer was exposed to cannabis culture at a young age as her family resided on Vashon Island, an enclave of bohemian-living that’s long been associated with guerilla farming. But in the 90s, the Island became swept up in a drug war that ended with Angelo’s father incarcerated in Federal Prison, for what the lead detective considered “the most sophisticated growing operation” he had seen in nearly a decade.

Today, as legislation surrounding cannabis is in a state of flux, Angelo has embraced photography as a way to challenge stigma around the plant. By cutting through the trippy visuals and over-sexed boob/bud shots and instead profiling growers and their … Read the rest

Inside China’s brutally cramped ‘home and work’ spaces

It was the run-down, beat-up back streets that first caught Alina Fedorenko’s attention. Hidden behind Beijing’s impressive high rises and new builds, they were leagues away from the tourist traps typically associated with the city. These streets – which were cramped, claustrophobic, stuck in another time – gave the Ukrainian photographer a rarely seen glimpse into the everyday lives of many Chinese citizens.

“In Beijing’s old quarter, named the Hutong area, people still live life like many years ago,” Alina explains. “Surviving and living here is not easy as many people have relocated to high buildings to have proper sanitation systems, which most of the houses in the Hutong area don’t have. Those who are left have created a beautiful symbiosis of working and living in … Read the rest

Building a career as a self-taught photographer

“I’m a workaholic… but I work by my own rules,” says Lola Paprocka, sipping a cup of tea in Huck’s 71a Gallery. “It’s really hard for me to obey.”

DIY has become second nature for Lola since moving to London from Poland at the age of 18, when she could barely speak English. “I never really felt like I belonged anywhere,” she says. “I always felt like a bit of a weirdo who didn’t fit in.”

Within a few years, Lola was managing tattoo shops and meeting like-minded creatives, figuring out her own path. In 2010, she inherited her first camera – an old Zenit belonging to her mum – before a trip to Australia.

Tentatively, Lola began to shoot drunk friends here and there

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Celebrating 70 years of Magnum Photos in New York

Martin Parr, Henri Cartier Bresson, David Alan Harvey, Susan Meiselas, Alec Soth, Jim Goldberg, Bruce Davidson.

When it comes to photography it’s hard to draw up a more impressive shopping list of names.

USA. New York City. 1951. A new face for the new world. Photo by Dennis Stock.

USA. New York City. 1951. A new face for the new world. Photo by Dennis Stock.

USA. New York City. 1956. Wall Street. Photo by Leonard Freed.

USA. New York City. 1956. Wall Street. Photo by Leonard Freed.

But they are just some of the legends past and present to join the ranks of Magnum Photos, and now in their 70th year the collective is celebrating its history and just how far it has come. In an exhibition – Early Magnum: On & In New York – Magnum looks back at the city that shaped it, a chance to take stock and reflect on … Read the rest

How globalised agriculture is ruining lives in South America

Not much remains of Guayaqui Cuá in southeastern Paraguay. As fires continue to smoulder, wisps of smoke float over the charred slats of a wooden bed, burnt personal possessions and a few sombre peasants living under makeshift plastic tents, which are all that’s left of this small rural community.

Two days ago, security men from the nearby cattle ranch and local police officers, under orders of a large estate owner, moved in without notice to evict the community and raze their properties to the ground, explains a tearful María Lina Estorales. Sitting despondently on the dirt floor and wiping rivers of tears from her face, she’s trying to work out what to do next – surrounded by members of the other 21 families who lost their … Read the rest

Welcome to Lagos: Africa’s new skate hotspot

It’s all kicking off in Lagos right now. From fashion to food, film and hip hop, Africa’s creative renaissance is well and truly alive in the Nigerian capital.

Yet when it comes to skateboarding, there’s an palpable void. Home to a staggering 21 million people, and holding the title of Africa’s most populous city, Lagos – or Las Gidi, to locals in the know – might just be the biggest city in the world without a skate park.TB_2TB_6

But local crew Wafflesncream are in the process of changing that – and fighting to help Lagos punch its weight on the global skate scene. After dropping Jide, the very first homegrown Nigerian skate edit last year, the Wafflesncream family took things to new heights when they … Read the rest

Capturing what it means to be young and in London in 2017

When photographer Julian Mährlein thinks about youth, his mind doesn’t instantly turn to the boring, tired stereotypes we’ve seen time and time again. Not the endless images commenting on social media obsessed teens, not the detached portraits of subcultures and expensive street fashion. Instead, when Julian thinks about youth, he’s all about neutrality and earnestness – a genuine wish to portray and understand, rather than judge or imply.

That perspective was particularly scarce when he started his London Youth series, right after the riots hit the capital back in the summer of 2011. While major media outlets focused on depicting young, tracksuit clad British people as savage beings getting off on mindless vandalism, ‘the most unpleasant and violent in the world’, Julian set out to … Read the rest

These Poetic Photograms Were Made in Total Darkness in Nature

If I narrated a scene of a group of women heading into the outdoors at night, carrying strange objects and performing odd rituals, you’d justifiably anticipate the unfurling of a classic witch’s tale. Perhaps it’s fitting, then, that the results of Klea McKenna’s nocturnal communion with nature—a series of photograms titled Automatic Earth—are downright magical. Rather than trying to conjure supernatural forces, however, McKenna captures the transcendent beauty of what’s plainly within reach, and reminds us that the mysteries of the natural world are already boundless. Her “photographic rubbings” of soil, concrete, and trees yield textured images that hint at the story of their making, but leave plenty unsaid.

She (1), 2016, Photographic rubbings of a redwood tree. Collage of 2 unique

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