In Conversation: Martin Parr
8 March 2019, 19:00
Ondaatje Wing Theatre
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Online dating profile picture, Hey Saturday, London, England, 2016. by Martin Parr © Martin Parr / Magnum Photos / Rocket Gallery
Martin Parr, one of Britain’s best-known and widely celebrated photographers, talks to curator Philip Prodger in celebration of the opening of Only Human: Martin Parr.
Martin Parr (b. 1952) has published over one hundred books of his own work, and edited a further thirty. Prolific in his activities, Parr has featured in more than a hundred exhibitions worldwide, including the 2002 retrospective Martin Parr Photoworks 1971-2000 at the Barbican, London, which toured Europe for the following five years. Recent exhibitions curated by Parr include: Strange and Familiar at the Barbican, London (2016); New Documents at the Brighton Photo Biennale (2010); and Parrworld at Haus de Kunst Munich (2008). In 2004, Parr served as Guest Artistic Director for Recontres D’Arles. Parr’s work has been collected by many of the major museums, including the Tate, the Pompidou and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In 1994 he became a full member of Magnum Photographic Cooperative and was elected president of Magnum Photos International (2013-2017). Parr is a Visiting Professor at Ulster University.
Parr studied photography at Manchester Polytechnic in the early 1970s and formed an integral part of a new wave of documentary photographers who revolutionised the genre. He achieved international recognition for photographic projects, such as The Last Resort (1983-85) and The Cost of Living (1987-89), which take an intimate, satirical and anthropological look at aspects of modern life, in particular, documenting the social classes of England and the increasing consumerism of the Western world. In 2017, Parr opened the Martin Parr Foundation, a new centre for British photography in Bristol, which aims to support and promote photographers who have made, and continue to make, important work focused on the British Isles.
Phillip Prodger, curator of Only Human: Martin Parr, is Senior Research Scholar at Yale Centre for British Art. He was Head of Photographs at the National Portrait Gallery, London from 2014 – 2018, where his exhibitions included William Eggleston Portraits (2016) and Victorian Giants: The Birth of Art Photography (2018). Phillip previously worked at the National Gallery of Canada, the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Peabody Essex Museum and the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University. His writings on art and photography have been published in eleven languages. He received a Ph.D. in history of art from Cambridge University. He also holds a B.A. from Williams College and a Master’s from Stanford University.
Part of the programme of events complementing Only Human: Martin Parr