Issue #234  9/18/2017
Photographer Martin Parr Opens His Foundation to the Public in October in Bristol, UK
Martin Parr Foundation.  Photo by Louis Little.
Martin Parr Foundation. Photo by Louis Little.

Noted British photographer Martin Parr will open his foundation in Bristol, UK, to the public, starting at the end of October with a show of his works, Black Country Stories from October25-January 2018).

The Martin Parr Foundation will provide access to his growing collection of photographs by fellow British and Irish photographers, including Chris Killip, Tony Ray-Jones and Roger Mayne and images of the UK taken by international photographers, such as Bruce Davidson and Gilles Peress.

Parr established his foundation three years ago, but the part sale and part gift of 12,000 photobooks to the Tate, announced just last week, means that the his Paintworks complex in Bristol, which has a studio, gallery, library and archive space, will be able to organize exhibitions, host seminars and welcome researchers.

"I knew I wanted to open the foundation but I had to save up enough money first," Parr said. The part purchase of his photobooks by the Tate, thanks to support from the Art Fund and Luma Foundation, made it all possible.

Parr added that the time required to organize museum loans of his photobooks was becoming "an issue" and hoped that that the Tate would be able to catalogue the collection and take up the lending role. The Tate reportedly plans to dedicate a room to Parr.

Parr decided to set up his own foundation, "because I don’t believe the V&A and the Tate believe in documentary photography as I do," he said, adding that photography has been downgraded at the Bradford branch of the Science Museum and access to Birmingham Library's collection has been reduced.

The address of the Martin Parr Foundation is 316 Paintworks, Arnos Vale, Bristol BS4 3AR. The website for the foundation is: http://www.martinparrfoundation.org. The Foundation will be open from Wed-Sat from 11am-6pm.