We look forward to another exciting month of photography with our list of must-see exhibitions this March.
Highlights include the work of world-renowned Martin Parr and a celebration of women in photography..
Mari Katayama’s first UK solo show is an arresting and visceral work featuring her body.
Born with various physical developmental challenges, Katayama had both legs amputated at age nine and has since lived with prosthetics.
Using her body as a living sculpture, she photographs herself among intricately embroidered, hand-sewn objects and her prosthetic legs.
Shaped by her experiences of her condition and society’s obsession and anxieties about bodily appearance Katayama’s striking work does not solely focus on disability itself, or the representation of the female body.
Rather it embodies the challenges brought about by her condition and wider perception of disability.
Katayama’s early artistic practice is represented by the works I’m wearing little high heel and I have child’s feet (2011).
Photographed in her teenage bedroom, among childhood prosthetics and handmade garments long since outgrown Katayama alludes to her memories of isolation due to perceived differences.
Her most recent photographic series cannot turn the clock back (2017), explores the numerous challenges of her physicality and identity.
Here Katayama’s conversation with the body through her art represents an even bigger turning point in her life, that of motherhood.
Mari Katayama, Broken Heart, White Rainbow, until March 2.
Small Town Inertia
For more than eight years J A Mortram has photographed the lives of people in his home community of Dereham, Norfolk.
His photography explores the everyday lives of people struggling to survive in an era of welfare cuts, diminished local government resources and an overburdened health sector.
Physical and mental health, isolation, addiction and self-harm are addressed with compassion, understanding and friendship in Mortram’s images.
Published as a book in 2017, Small Town Inertia is a firm rebuttal of the political rhetoric, ‘we are all in this together’.
J A Motram: Small Town Inertia, Amber, Side Gallery, until March 24.
Women in Photography: A History of British Trailblazers
This exhibition is the first in-depth historical survey showcasing the achievements of female photographers in Britain.
It features work from the early innovations of Anna Atkins and Queen Alexandra, through to Dorothy Bohm’s depiction of 1960s London and the self-portraiture of Sarah Lucas in the 2000s.
Professor Jean Wainwright (University for the Creative Arts) has compiled new and archival interviews to accompany the exhibition.
The resulting conversations are played alongside the images they discuss.
The exhibition is complimented by a series of events including:
- In Conversation: On the Royal Road with Jayne Fincher, Friday, March 8, 7pm.
- Pioneering Women Photographers in The Royal Collection, Thursday, March 28, 7pm.
Women in Photography: A History of British Trailblazers, The Lightbox, until June 2.
Main image: India Song, The Lovesick Prince, Aam Khas, Dungarpur, 2013 © Karen Knorr, courtesy of Augusta Edwards
Only Human: Martin Parr
A major new exhibition of works by Martin Parr opens at the National Portrait Gallery this March.
Only Human: Martin Parr, brings together some of Parr’s best known photographs alongside new work never exhibited before to focus on one of his most engaging subjects – people.
Featuring portraits of people from around the world, the exhibition examines national identity today with a special focus on Parr’s wry observations of Britishness.
Britain in the time of Brexit will be the focus of one section, featuring new works, revealing Parr’s take on the social climate in the aftermath of the EU referendum.
The exhibition will also focus on the British Abroad and Parr’s long term study of the British ‘Establishment’.
Although best known for capturing ordinary people, Parr has also photographed celebrities throughout his career.
Only Human will reveal a selection of portraits of renowned personalities, most of which have never been exhibited before.
These include British fashion legends Vivienne Westwood and Paul Smith, contemporary artists Tracey Emin and Grayson Perry and world-renowned football player Pelé.
The exhibition also features the unforgettable self-portraits Parr has made throughout his career.
Only Human: Martin Parr, National Portrait Gallery, March 7 to May 29.