Martin Parr: Kentucky Derby, Louisville, USA, 2015 Martin Parr

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A bespoke special edition of Martin Parr’s major new book on one of his most enduring subjects: people. By turns witty, surprising, and ingenious, Parr’s photographs reveal the eccentricities of modern life with affection and insight.


Martin waited and waited to get this photo of ladies queuing for the bathroom. The feathered hats, bright clothing and symmetry make for a classic Parr picture.

Taken at the Kentucky Derby, the most famous horse race in the US, also known as ‘The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports’ or 'The Fastest Two Minutes in Sports' in reference to its approximate duration. Martin has long been fascinated by the races and this was on his bucket list of races. A classic Parr photograph – true Parr style – and he says this was one of the serendipitous moments worth waiting for – he waited and waited until this picture revealed itself, and knew immediately he had a winning photograph here. The ladies are of course queuing for the bathroom, on their phones and standing in line – great symmetry in the image. But also the bright clothes, the feathered hats, the shoes, the use of the phone, etc.


Colour pigment print
Paper size: 11 x 14 in (356 x 280 mm)
Image size: 9 x 13.5 inches (343 x 229 mm)
An edition of 100 plus 10 artist's proofs
Print and book signed and numbered by Martin Parr


A major new book on Martin Parr explores the photographer's most enduring subject – people – as never before

By turns witty, surprising, and ingenious, Martin Parr's photographs reveal the eccentricities of modern life with affection and insight. This book – published to coincide both with Parr's 2019 exhibition at London's National Portrait Gallery and also the date the UK will leave the EU – examines what it means to be human at a time of both change and retrospection. Bringing together new work from the last decade, Only Human explores the concepts of Britishness and national identity through the rituals and habits of everyday life.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Size: 245 x 210 mm (9 5/8 x 8 1/4 in)
  • Pages: 240 pp
  • Illustrations: 250 illustrations
  • ISBN: 9781838660017c

Martin Parr's distinctive style has established him as a leading cultural commentator in contemporary photography. Parr has published over 80 photobooks, and his work has been recognized with major awards and over 100 exhibitions worldwide.

Phillip Prodger is senior research scholar at the Yale University Center for British Art, and was formerly head of photographs at the NPG, London.

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