Don McCullin @ Tate Britain

This is an enormous exhibition of over 250 photos by famous war photographer Don McCullin. A working class lad who left school at 15 and got interested in cameras during his national service, the show opens with the first photograph he sold (in 1958 a policeman was stabbed by members of a gang in Finsbury […]

Don McCullin

This is a beautifully produced book, a huge coffee-table format feast of Don McCullin’s very best photographs, along with a generous helping of many less well-known ones. War photos McCullin is well known as one of the great war photographers of the second half of the twentieth century, having been close up to conflict across […]

Shaped by War by Don McCullin (2010)

I felt I was in the right place at the right time. I had an almost magnetic emotional sense of direction pulling me to extraordinary places. (Shaped by War, page 37) In 2010 the Imperial War Museum held an exhibition of the war-related photos of Don McCullin. This is the large-format, coffee table book of […]

Unreasonable Behaviour by Don McCullin (2015)

‘I needed to be at home. I needed the peace of my own country, England. Yet when I go home and sleep in my own bed, I soon become restless. I am not shaped for a house. I grew up in harsh surroundings. I have slept under tables in battles for days on end. There […]

Photography reviews

Autograph ABP The Island by Mónica de Miranda (October 2022) Purdah: The Sacred Cloth by Arpita Shah (November 2018) Liberty / Diaspora by Omar Victor Diop (November 2018) I Am Now You / Mother by Marcia Michael (June 2018) Devotion: A Portrait of Loretta by Franklyn Rodgers (June 2018) Barbican Masculinities: Liberation through Photography @ the Barbican – 1 […]

Exhibitions and art reviews

Autograph Island by Mónica de Miranda (October 2022) Lina Iris Viktor (January 2020) Purdah – The Sacred Cloth by Arpita Shah (November 2018) Liberty / Diaspora by Omar Victor Diop (November 2018) I Am Now You – Mother by Marcia Michael (June 2018) Devotion: A Portrait of Loretta by Franklyn Rodgers (June 2018) Barbican Postwar […]

Chris Killip @ the Photographers Gallery

This is one of the most powerful and moving exhibitions I’ve ever been to. Chris Killip was one of the UK’s most important and influential post-war documentary photographers. He was born in 1946 and died in October 2020. He is best known for his gritty photos of working class life in the north of England […]

Postwar Modern: New Art in Britain 1945 to 1965 @ the Barbican

Layout The Barbican gallery is a big exhibition space, spread over two floors. On the ground floor, as you come in, there’s the ticket desk and shop, then you walk through a doorway on your right into the ground floor display space. This is divided into three successively larger ‘rooms’, the third and final one […]

The Warrior’s Honour: Ethnic War and the Modern Conscience by Michael Ignatieff (1998) – 1

The family of nations is run largely by men with blood on their hands. (p.82) The main title and the picture on the cover are a bit misleading. They give the impression the entire book is going to be an investigation of the honour or value system of the many groups of soldiers, militias, paramilitaries […]

Content warnings at Tate

Warning: This blog post contains strong and sometimes challenging imagery, including depictions of slavery, violence and suffering. Baroque Britain When I visited the Baroque Britain exhibition at Tate Britain I was surprised that there was a Content Warning at the entrance to the second room. This warned us that some of the images were disturbing […]