Visit ‘Seaside: Photographed’ at Turner Contemporary, Margate

Turner Contemporary’s first ever photography exhibition includes major works by Henri Cartier-Bresson and Martin Parr, and aims to examine the relationship between photographers, photography and the British seaside from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day.

Curated by Val Williams and Karen Shepherdson, Seaside: Photographed combines images of hotel life, the beach, the holiday camp, dressing up and dressing down, wild waves and coastlines to create a rich picture of the British seaside. Whilst Cartier-Bresson’s decisive moment was suited to capturing the spontaneity of seaside leisure activities in the mid-century, Parr’s series The Last Resort: Photographs of New Brighton, completed in the mid-1980s, was the first project in which the photographer began to move toward his now distinct personal style: a wry, gently satirical photography characterised by the use of vivid colour.

The exhibition features both the work of well-known photographers – such as Parr and Cartier-Bresson – as well as largely unknown bodies of work from across the medium’s history, including Raymond Lawson’s chronicle of family life in Whitstable. In response to Seaside: Photographed, contemporary artists Bethan Peters and Stacie Lee Bennett-Worth have been commissioned to create a new artwork inspired by residents local to the Margate gallery.

Seaside: Photographed runs through September 8 at Turner Contemporary, Margate, before touring to the John Hansard Gallery, Grundy Art Gallery, and Newlyn Art Gallery and the Exchange in 2020. The exhibition is supported by Arts Council England, with an accompanying book published by Thames & Hudson.

Find out more here.

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