||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2012)|
|Born||23 May 1952
Epsom, Surrey, England, UK
|Awards||Centenary Medal from the Royal Photographic Society in 2008|
Martin Parr (born 23 May 1952) is a British documentary photographer, photojournalist and photobook collector. He is known for his photographic projects that take a critical look at aspects of modern life, in particular provincial and suburban life in England. He is a member of Magnum Photos.
- 1 Life and career
- 2 Monographs
- 3 Retrospectives, private publications, very limited publications
- 4 Papers and zines
- 5 Books with others
- 6 Books edited by Parr
- 7 Books about Parr
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Life and career
Born in Epsom, Surrey, Parr wanted to become a documentary photographer from the age of fourteen, and cites his grandfather, an amateur photographer, as an early influence. From 1970 to 1973, he studied photography at Manchester Polytechnic. He married Susan Mitchell in 1980, and they have one child, Ellen Parr (born 1986). He has lived in Bristol since 1987.
Parr began work as a professional photographer and has subsequently taught photography intermittently from the mid-1970s. He was first recognised for his black-and-white photography in the north of England, Bad Weather (1982) and A Fair Day (1984), but switched to colour photography in 1984. The resulting work, The Last Resort: Photographs of New Brighton, was published in 1986.
It is difficult from a perspective of almost a quarter of a century to underestimate the significance of The Last Resort, either in British photography or Martin Parr's career. For both, it represented a seismic change in the basic mode of photographic expression, from monochrome to colour, a fundamental technical change that heralded the development of a new tone in documentary photography.
Since 1994, Parr has been a member of Magnum Photos. He has had almost 50 books published, and featured in around 80 exhibitions worldwide - including an exhibition at the Barbican Arts Centre, London. In 2007, his retrospective exhibition was selected to be the main show of Month of Photography Asia in Singapore. In 2008, he was made an Honorary Doctor of Arts at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) in recognition for his ongoing contribution to photography and to MMU's School of Art.
Parr's approach to documentary photography is intimate, anthropological and satirical. Macro lenses, ring flash, high-saturation colour film, and since it became an easier format to work in, digital photography, all allow him to put his subjects "under the microscope" in their own environment, giving them space to expose their lives and values in ways that often involve inadvertent humour. For example, to create his book Signs of the Times: A Portrait of the Nation's Tastes (1992), Parr entered ordinary people's homes and took pictures of the mundane aspects of his hosts' lives, combining the images with quotes from his subjects to bring viewers uncomfortably close to them. The result of Parr's technique has been said to leave viewers with ambiguous emotional reactions, unsure whether to laugh or cry.
Besides being a photographer, Parr is a keen collector of postcards, photographs and various other items of vernacular and popular culture, and many of his collections have been used as the basis for publications. Since the 1970s, Parr has collected and publicised the garish postcards made between the 1950s and 1970s by John Hinde and his team of photographers. The images made by Hinde and his team are a key influence on Parr's colour photography.
As an admirer of this medium he has published several photobooks as well as a work about photobooks. The Photobook: A History (in two volumes) covers more than 1,000 examples of photobooks from the 19th century through to the present day. The work was a collaboration with the critic Gerry Badger which took eight years to complete.
Parr's first contact with the medium of film was his collaboration with Nick Barker from 1990-1992, taking pictures to accompany Barker's film Signs of the Times. In 1997, Parr began producing his own television documentaries with Mosaic Film.
He was cameraman on the film, It's Nice Up North with comedian Graham Fellows as his character John Shuttleworth. The film is a comic documentary filmed over several years in Shetland and was released in 2006.
Awards and honours
- 2004 - Appointed a professor of photography, University of Wales, Newport
- 2005 - Honorary Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society (FRPS), Royal Photographic Society
- Bad Weather. London: Zwemmer, 1982. ISBN 0-302-99996-5
- Calderdale Photographs. Exhibition catalogue. Calderdale Museums Services, 1984
- A Fair Day: Photographs from the West Coast of Ireland. Salem House, 1984. ISBN 0-907797-10-5
- Prescot Now and Then. Catalogue. Metropolitan Borough of Knowsley Leisure Services Department, 1984
- The Last Resort: Photographs of New Brighton.
- The Cost of Living. Farrar, Straus & Giroux. ISBN 0-89381-439-3. Cornerhouse, 1989. ISBN 0-948797-55-X
- One Day Trip. Pas-de-Calais: Editions de la différence, 1989. ISBN 2-904538-19-4.
- Signs of the Times: A Portrait of the Nation's Tastes. Manchester: Cornerhouse, 1992.
- Bored Couples. Paris: Gallery du Jour, 1993.
- Home and Abroad. London: Jonathan Cape, 1994. ISBN 0-224-03132-5
- From A to B: Tales of Modern Motoring. BBC Books. ISBN 0-563-36984-1
- Small World: A global photographic project 1987–1994. (with Simon Winchester) Stockport, Cheshire: Dewi Lewis
- British Food. Catalogue. Paris: Galerie Agnès B./Gallery du Jour
- 1998. Second edition.
- West Bay. Rocket Press, 1997.
- Japonais Endormis. Galerie Agnès B, 1998. ISBN 2-906496-29-4
- Common Sense. Dewi Lewis, 1999. ISBN 1-899235-07-8
- Sguardi Gardesani. Milan: Charta, 1999.
- Benidorm. Catalogue. Sprengel Museum Hannover, 1999. ISBN 3-89169-145-9.
- Autoportrait. Stockport, Cheshire: Dewi Lewis, 2000. ISBN 1-899235-72-8
- Think of England. Phaidon.
- The Phone Book: 1998-2002. Edition of 2,002 copies. London: Rocket and Essen: Galerie 20.21, 2002. ISBN 0-946676-53-4. ISBN 3-9806647-2-4.
- 7 Communist Still Lifes. Edition of 500 copies. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli Press, 2003. Nazraeli Press One Picture Book No 17.
- Fashion Magazine. Paris: Magnum Photos, 2005. ISBN 978-2-9524102-0-5
- 7 Colonial Still Lifes. Edition of 500 copies. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli. Press One Picture Book No 28. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli Press, 2005.
- Mexico. London: Chris Boot, 2006. ISBN 0-9546894-8-8.
- Parrjektif. Istanbul: Mavi Jeans, 2006
- Tutta Roma. Rome & Milan: Contrasto, 2007. ISBN 88-6965-016-2
- Parking Spaces. London: Chris Boot Ltd, 2007.
- Everybody Dance Now. New York: editions2wice, 2009
- Playas. London: Chris Boot and Mexico: Editorial RM, 2009
- Luxury. London: Chris Boot, 2009. ISBN 1-905712-13-8
- Martin Parr in INDIA. New Delhi: Photoink, 2010
- Japan. Edition of 500 copies. Tokyo: Super Labo, 2011. ISBN 4-905052-13-0
- 7 Cups of Tea. Edition of 500 copies. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli press, 2012. ISBN 978-1-580053-57-7
- No Worries. Sydney: T & G, 2012. ISBN 978-0-987079-08-4
- Up and Down Peachtree. Rome & Milan: Contrasto, 2012. ISBN 88-6965-332-3
- Souvenir. Catalogue. Barcelona: CCCB, 2012
- Life's a Beach.
- Aperture, 2012 (edition of 1,000 copies)
- Xavier Barral, 2012 (edition of 1,000 copies)
- New York: Aperture, 2013. ISBN 978-1597112246
- Du / Think of Switzerland. Magazine. Switzerland: Du, 2013
- The Non-Conformists. New York: Aperture, 2013. ISBN 1-597112-45-3
Retrospectives, private publications, very limited publications
- Boring Photographs. 2000. (Photographs of Boring, Oregon: not postcards. Edition limited to 12 signed copies.)
- Flowers. Munkedals: Munken & Trebruk, 1999 (edition of 2,500). Paris: Galerie Agnès B./Gallery du Jour, 2001.
- Stern Portfolio. Retrospective. Hamburg: Stern Spezial Fotografie, 2004. ISBN 978-3-570194-45-4
- I Grandi Fotografi: Magnum Photos. Testimonianze e visioni del nostro tempo. Milan: Hachette Fascicoli, 2005.
- Martin Parr Retrospective 1971-2000. Seoul Arts Centre, 2007
- The Real World. Edition of 700 copies. Lithuania: Kaunas Photography Gallery, 2010.
- Urban Outfitters. Urban Outfitters, 2011
- Assorted Cocktail. Mallorca: Casal Solleric de Palma, 2009 and DOX, Centre for Contemporary Art, 2011
Papers and zines
- Basler Magazin (edition). Basel, Switzerland: Basler, 1997
- A8 Glasgow. London: John McAslan + Partners, 2005
- Rebirth. Stiletto, 2007
- Luxembourg. Luxembourg et Grande Region, 2007
- Fashion Newspaper. Magnum, 2007
- Dubai. Dubai: The Third Line, 2008
- Guardian Cities Project. London: The Guardian, 2008
- The Art Newspaper (17 October 2008 edition). London: Umberto Allemandi & Co, 2008
- The Art Newspaper (18 & 19 October 2008 edition). London: Umberto Allemandi & Co, 2008
- St Mary Redcliffe. Bristol City Council, 2011
- The Goutte d'Or. L’Institut des Cultures d’Islam, 2011
- Bristol and West. Bristol: M Shed, 2011
- Black Country Women. West Bromwich, England: Multistory, 2013. ISBN 978-0-956345-77-6
Books with others
- Correspondencia. With Marcelo Brodsky. Chile: AFA Editions, 2008
- Joachim Schmid Is Martin Parr · Martin Parr Is Joachim Schmid. Self-published, Joachim Schmid / Blurb, 2009.
- One Day: 10 Photographers. Kehrer Verlag, 2010
- Vu Par. Bonsecours, France: Edition Point de vues, 2005.
- Road Trip, Martin Parr and Friends. With others. Sony Ericsson, 2005
- Witness Number Three. New York: Joy of Giving Something, Inc, 2007
- Parr by Parr. With Quentin Bajac. Schilt, 2010
- A Book of Kings. Third Millenium Information, 2010
- Macchu Picchu. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli, 2010
- Made in Italy. Booklet. Pazzini Editore, Rimini, 2012
Books edited by Parr
- The Actual Boot, 1986
- Boring Postcards. London: Phaidon, 1999. Hardback ISBN 0-7148-3895-0. Paperback ISBN 0-7148-4390-3)
- London 1958-59, Sergio Larrain, 1998
- Boring Postcards USA. London: Phaidon, 2000. Hardback ISBN 0-7148-4000-9. Paperback ISBN 0-7148-4391-1
- Langweilige Postkarten, London: Phaidon, 2001. ISBN 0-7148-4062-9.
- From Our House to Your House: Celebrating the American Christmas. Stockport, Cheshire: Dewi Lewis, 2002. ISBN 1-899235-34-5
- Our True Intent Is All for Your Delight: The John Hinde Butlin's Photographs. London: Chris Boot, 2002. ISBN 0-9542813-0-6. London: Chris Boot, 2011.
- Bliss: Postcards of Couples and Families. Chris Boot, 2003. ISBN 0-9542813-3-0
- Saddam Hussein Watches. London, 2004.
- Lodz Ghetto Album, 2004
- The Photobook: A History Volume I (with Gerry Badger) London: Phaidon, 2004. ISBN 0-7148-4285-0
- My Amsterdam, Ed van der Elsken, 2005
- Photographs by David Goldblatt. Rome & Milan: Contrasto. ISBN 88-6965-015-4
- The Photobook: A History Volume II (with Gerry Badger) London: Phaidon, 2006. ISBN 0-7148-4433-0
- Darkroom, Michel Campeau, 2007
- Half Awake and Half Asleep in the Water, Asako Narahashi, 2007
- Parr World. Postcards. London: Chris Boot, 2008. ISBN 978-1-905712-10-6
- Parr World. Objects. London: Chris Boot, 2008. ISBN 978-1-905712-08-3
- Bureaucratics, Jan Banning. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli, 2008. ISBN 978-1-59005-232-7
- School, Raimond Wouda, 2009
- Archivo, 2009
- Retratos Pintados by Titus Riedl. Portland, Oregon: Nazraeli Press 2010
- Grimaces of a Weary Village by Rimaldas Viksraitis. White Space Gallery, 2010
- Brighton Photo Biennial. Brighton: BPB, 2010
- Las Postales de las familias Garcia Lorca y De los Rios. Madrid: Obra Social Caja, 2010
- Martin Parr's Best Books of the Decade. PhotoIreland, 2011
- La Creciente, Alejandro Chaskielberg, 2011
- The Protest Box. Göttingen: Steidl, 2011
- The Latin American Photobook. Aperture Foundation and Fundación Televisa, 2011
- C Photo / New Latin Look. Ivory Press, 2012
- Strangely Familiar, Peter Mitchell, 2013
Books about Parr
Some of these also include photographs by Parr.
- Martin Parr by Val Williams. London: Phaidon Press. Hardback, 2002. ISBN 0-7148-3990-6. Paperback, 2005.
- Phaidon 55: Martin Parr by Sandra S Phillips. London: Phaidon, 2007. ISBN 978-0-7148-4528-9 / Martin Parr by Sandra S Phillips. London: Phaidon, 2013
- Coomes, Phil (29 February 2012). "England Uncensored by Peter Dench". BBC Online. Retrieved 20 March 2012.
- Robert Ayers (15 November 2006). "Martin Parr". artinfo. Archived from the original on 2009-02-12. Archived 12 February 2009.
- "Last chance to see: Martin Parr Exhibition at M Shed". Bristol City Council. 15 November 2011. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
- Hamilton, Peter (2013). "Northern Exposures". British Journal of Photography (Incisive Financial Publishing Limited) 160 (7808): 64. "many of the images are in colour - a medium in which Bulmer was the British pioneer, and way ahead of photographers now considered scions of the metier, such as William Eggleston, who only started to dabble with it a decade later, and Martin Parr, post-1970."
- Parr, Martin (2009). The Last Resort. Stockport: Dewi Lewis Publishing. p. 5. ISBN 978-1-904587-79-8.
- List of 2008 Honorary Graduates "Honorary Graduates 2008". Manchester Metropolitan University. Retrieved 5 January 2014. "Martin Parr Photographer Doctor of Arts In recognition for his ongoing contribution to photography and to MMU’s School of Art."
- Williams, Val (2002). Martin Parr. London: Phaidon. ISBN 0-7148-3990-6.
- O’Hagan, Sean (2 December 2012). "Best photography books of 2012". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 January 2014. "Another Magnum photographer, the prodigious Martin Parr, turned his acid eye on America for the first time with Up and Down Peachtree (Contrasto £25), a series of colour snapshots from Atlanta, Georgia of the garish and the intimate."
- "Lecture by Martin Parr". California College of the Arts. 12 March 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2014. "In 2004 Parr was appointed a professor of photography at the University of Wales Newport campus, and was guest artistic director for Rencontres D'Arles in 2004. ... At PhotoEspana, 2008, Parr won the Baume et Mercier award in recognition of his professional career and contributions to contemporary photography. He curated the 2010 Brighton Photo Biennial."
- "Honorary Fellowships". Royal Photographic Society. Retrieved 5 January 2014. "2005 ... Martin Parr"
- "Centenary Medal". The Royal Photographic Society. Retrieved 5 January 2014. "2008 Martin Parr"
- "Notable MMU Alumni". Manchester Metropolitan University. Retrieved 5 January 2014. "Martin Parr Creative Photography & Honorary Degree"
- Newman, Cheryl; Bonadio, Lívia (5 December 2013). "Alec Soth: My top 10 photo Books of 2013". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 25 December 2013. "Black Country Women / Martin Parr (Multistory) Nosey Parr-ker hits it out of the park with this hysterically funny yet humane look at working-class women in the English West Midlands."
- Official website
- Martin Parr at Magnum Photos, includes many of his photographs
- Photographic agency website
- Martin Parr: Mischievous Ironist - an audio interview with Jim Casper[dead link]
- Interview with Martin Parr from 'Tous Photographes!'
- Martin Parr on Photographing Britain (video)