Rough round the edges - punk London in print
The Michael Hoppen gallery's forthcoming Punk photo show will display vintage 70s prints, wrinkles and all
The Michael Hoppen gallery, at 3 Jubilee Place lies just off Kings Road in London, just a short walk away from where Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood’s SEX boutique once stood. In the late seventies, this neighbourhood was the centre of punk rock, and now, 40 years later, Michael Hoppen will look back at that time, with a show of vintage photographs from the period.
The show, opening 20 July and entitled Punk, is staged in conjunction with the picture agency, Rex Shutterstock, and includes photos of well-known figures from the time, including John Lydon (or Johnny Rotten as he was then known), Jordan, Siouxsie Sioux and Soo Catwoman, as well as complete unknowns, caught busking in Covent Garden or snearing on the street corner.
The prints come directly from press archives are “are suitably distressed, with an object quality and intensity that encapsulates the movement,” says the gallery. That might sound slightly disingenuous, but the crumpling around the edges of the shots does add to a kind of 'keep it real' authenticity.
For more great archival punk visuals, take a look at our forthcoming book, Oh So Pretty Punk in Print 1976-80. It’s an unrivalled collection of visually striking ephemera collected by Toby Mott from Britain’s punk subculture, featuring 500 artefacts - 'zines,' gig posters, flyers, and badges - from well-known and obscure musical acts, designers, venues, and related political groups.