Arts & Entertainment

Martin Parr’s quirky gaze stars in photographer’s first Belgium retrospective

By Jorge Ocana

Brussels, Oct 4 (efe-epa).- A retrospective of British documentary photographer Martin Parr’s take on the mundane and quotidian in life, albeit with lashings of humour and irony, launched Monday in Belgium.

The quirky pictures reveal nuanced glimpses into the experiences of myriad generations and people of diverse backgrounds exploring western cultural stereotypes.

 “Each series is different, and at the same time the visitor will see how everything is connected,” Andréa Holzherr, who has worked with Parr for 20 years and directed the exhibition at the Hangar center, tells Efe.

Some 400 images that hang across three floors span 40 years of the artist’s career.

“It is always very interesting working with Martin because he is very curious. He is very enthusiastic. He knows what he wants. He loves different ideas (…) and he likes to try out things,” Holzherr argues.

Parr’s photography invites the viewer to see beauty and art in those fleeting everyday moments in life, and in the seemingly boring and mundane.

“Bad Weather”, a black and white photo of a downpour, taps into Britain’s obsession with the weather.

For Parr, depicting the gloomy British weather was an act of subversion by challenging the idea that photographers should only get snapping when the light is good and the sun is out, the artist explains in a statement collected by the organizers.

His work took a political turn with his “The Last Resort” series, a nostalgic love-letter to the swinging sixties and the end of an era where the working class and its values ushered in a new way of life dictated by consumerism.

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