Organised Kaos, Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, South Wales 2016, by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.
Organised Kaos, Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, South Wales 2016, by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.

Martin Parr's community service

The Magnum president shows his caring side by shooting a bunch of Britain's most worthy local projects

Martin Parr can sometimes come across as a bit cheeky, catching Benidrom sunbathers or elderly Swiss skiers looking not quite at their very best. However, as anyone who knows him will tell you, there's also a socially responsible side to the British photographer, currently Magnum Photos president, and that comes across in this recent commission from the Aviva Community Fund.

 

Organised Kaos, Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, South Wales 2016, by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.
Organised Kaos, Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, South Wales 2016, by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.

This philanthropic initiative, bankrolled by the British insurance company Aviva, aids community groups around the UK. Parr visited five organisations which received help last year, to produce this touching portrait of contemporary British social endeavours.

There are images shot at Organised Kaos, a Friday night circus school in North Wales; a veterans tea party and concert hosted by The Not Forgotten Association in Colchester; a tag rugby tournament organised by Cramlington Rocket Community, in Northumberland; at a Thursday night training session for the ladies of Camden Town F.C. in North London; and at the weekly rehearsals for the the Loxley Silver Band in Sheffield.

 

A Cramlington Rockets community event in Cramlington, Northumberland, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.
A Cramlington Rockets community event in Cramlington, Northumberland, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.

The photos are just as candid as other Parr shoots, though there appears to be a genuine empathy for the work undertaken by these groups in these pictures, which are being brought together as Community Spirit, a digital exhibition by Martin Parr, to promote the Aviva Community Fund’s annual appeal for applications.

 

The Loxley Silver Band, Sheffield, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.
The Loxley Silver Band, Sheffield, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.

“Throughout my career I’ve travelled all over the UK, capturing the hidden stories and the beauty in the ordinary and everyday,” says the photographer. “This was an exciting project because it gave both me and the viewer access to the extraordinary work undertaken by groups that form the fabric of their local community.”

 

Camden Ladies at UCS Playing Fields, London, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.
Camden Ladies at UCS Playing Fields, London, England 2016 by Martin Parr. Martin @ DMB / Magnum Photos.

You can put forward a group for funding here; and you can see many more Parr shots in our books, which include this monograph and this culinary overview, Real Food.