Parr Martin
De La Warr Pavilion

Martin Parr

About the artist

1952 —

Martin Parr is a British photojournalist and social documentarian, and member of Magnum Photos, whose work often contains satirical elements. He is considered one of the foremost living figures in modern documentary photography, having received lifetime achievement awards by PHotoEspaña and the Royal Academy of Arts, among many others, and been awarded by the British Empire (CBE) for services to photography.

Parr's work takes "society's natural prejudice" to "create fiction out of reality." He employs vivid use of colour, hones in on cultural peculiarities and evokes distinct details to pass comment on society. Parr's vast and varied body of work has included fashion photography for brands such as Louis Vuitton. Individual series and projects have also focused on leisure and consumption, namely a 1989 photo series captured during a "booze cruise," and the 1999 exhibition Common Sense, the culmination of a fifteen-year project. 158 pictures shot on 35mm, ultra-saturated film depict the rise in consumer culture that came to dominate the final stages of twentieth-century life.

He has published upwards of 100 books of his own work, curated for exhibits in Brighton, New York, and at London's Barbican, and worked on several documentary series in television and cinema. The Martin Parr Foundation, a cultural hub in Bristol, opened in 2017; two years later, Parr's work was exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery. At seventy-one, he continues to make his indelible imprint on culture both at home and internationally, adding to a body of work that mutates and shapeshifts with the current shape of the world.

Technical information

Image 1: De La Warr Pavilion, 1978
Size: 20,3 x 30,5 cm
Print techique: gelatin silver