Martin ParrThe Last Resort 40 1983-6, printed 2002

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Artwork details

Artist
Martin Parr (born 1952)
Title
The Last Resort 40
Date 1983-6, printed 2002
MediumPhotograph, colour, on paper mounted onto aluminuim
Dimensionsimage: 1040 x 1320 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by the artist and Rocket Gallery 2002
Reference
P11922
Not on display

Summary

The Last Resort is a series of forty photographs taken in New Brighton, a beach suburb of Liverpool. Shot with a medium format camera and daylight flash, the photographs are an early example of Parr’s characteristic saturated colour, influenced by the American colour photography of William Eggleston (born 1939) and Garry Winogrand (1928-84). Parr printed eleven images from The Last Resort in a large-format edition of five for his 2002 retrospective at the Barbican Art Gallery, London. New Brighton, Merseyside (40) is one of four works from this special edition owned by Tate.

The photographs comprising The Last Resort were taken between 1983 and 1985, a period of economic decline in northwest England. They depict 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 was exhibited at the Serpentine Gallery, London and published as a book in 1986, and was instrumental in establishing Parr’s reputation as a photographer. Traditionally, documentary photography in Britain sought to glorify the working class; here Parr shows a warts-and-all picture of a down-at-heel resort populated by day trippers seeking cheap thrills… (read more)

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