Your chance to own a signed Martin Parr beach print
The photographer offers a new take on one of his favourite subjects in this Phaidon Collector’s Edition
“Over the course of Martin Parr’s career, no subject has occupied him more comprehensively, or more consistently, than the countless small things that make Britain what it is,” explains photo curator Philip Prodger in our new book, Only Human: Photographs by Martin Parr. “He probes the clichés of British life – cups of tea and English breakfasts, rhubarb, umbrellas and sticks of rock – giving them fresh consideration.”
For most of his career, Parr has probed those subjects at fairly close quarters. In recent times, he has used a Canon DLSR camera with fairly conventional, 50mm f/2.5 Compact Macro lens; this lets him get nice, sharp pictures at close quarters.
However, in an interview a couple of years back, Parr told us that he had begun experimenting with long-range, telephoto lenses on a trip to Benidorm. “It's always exciting to discover new possibilities,” he said.
Now, one of his best, most recent images, takes a typical Parr subject – a queue beside an ice-cream van on Tenby Beach in Wales – but offers it up to the viewer at one remove, thanks to his newfound interest in telephoto photography.
The lens not only enables him to photograph the van’s customers completely unobserved, but also to explore new ways of graphically organizing space. The composition is great, and the lens itself adds a flattening effect, making the people in the queue look like colourful cut-outs. People walk into the frame, top and bottom, giving the composition a pleasing balance.
Parr has signed a limited edition of 100 of these prints, which are available along with a beautifully presented Collector's Edition of his new book Only Human.
This 11 x 14 in (356 x 280 mm) colour-pigment print is signed and numbered by the photographer, and makes for a solid investment, a great gift, and a tasteful addition to any wall, in Great Britain or elsewhere. Find out how you can buy your copy here.