18 June – 30 July 10
Award winning Magnum photographer Chris Steele-Perkins unflinchingly records the absurdities, the pleasures and the tragedies of English life, invariably with wit and humour. There is a certain pathos in the image of a crowded beach, complete with donkeys, in which an unobserved dog pisses upon a windbreak: the English are unbelievably stoical holidaymakers.
He would resist being called a cultural anthropologist but “all human life is here” as well as the illusions that propel it. One can move from an amazing shot of obese male strippers, The Blobendales, to one of a Brixton Reggae Festival where inexplicably, the entire Afro-Caribbean audience looks glum; or to a group of “blissed out” Children of Jesus. His stance is non-judgmental or, more precisely, of Dickensian largesse, but his preoccupation with the truth about England, brilliantly captured, means perhaps that he really loves it, warts and all.
England, My England
Published by Northumbria Press, 153 pages
Price: £25 hardback
Available from Kings Place Gallery T: 020 7520 1485
Kings Place Gallery / Bookshop / Balcony North Gallery:
Monday – Friday 10 am – 6 pm
Saturday – Sunday 11 am – 5 pm