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Only Human: Martin Parr

Previously unseen photographs of Martin Parr’s Brexit Britain are on display at the National Portrait Gallery as part of the Only Human: Martin Parr exhibition

The exhibition, supported by Gucci and The Bern Schwartz Family Foundation, runs until 27 May and brings together a selection of Parr’s best-known images in which he observes Britishness. The exhibition is also showcasing new work. Images include those of the British Abroad, as well as recent photographs taken at Christ’s Hospital School in Sussex, Oxford and Cambridge universities, and the City of London and even self-portraits.


Martin Parr said: “I am very excited to have the opportunity to show my work at such a prestigious gallery. One of the main themes is British identity and given March is when we are supposedly leaving the European Union, the timing could not be better.”

Dr Nicholas Cullinan, director of the National Portrait Gallery, London, said: “We are delighted to be able to display so many new works by one of Britain’s most widely celebrated photographers in this major exhibition. Martin Parr’s witty, surprising and ingenious photographs not only reveal the eccentricities of modern life with affection and insight, they also change the way we look at ourselves, and the way we consider our relationship with the wider world. Only Human contributes to an ongoing debate about what it means to be British in an international context and reflects on the shared cultural and social history that defines the United Kingdom during a moment of change.”


The exhibition also includes a pop-up cafe, inspired by Parr’s iconic food photography where visitors can purchase Great British teatime treats, as well as an exclusive ‘Only Human’ beer crafted in collaboration with British craft brewery, Lost and Grounded, during the gallery’s Friday Lates (6pm to 9pm).


A book, Only Human, has also been produced by Phaidon to accompany the exhibition. It features more than 200 images, as well as newly commissioned essays from exhibition curator, Phillip Prodger, and an introduction by artist, Grayson Perry.

Tickets to the exhibition are £18 without a donation and £20 with a donation. Members, patrons and under 12s have free entry. For under 25s, the gallery releases 500 £5 tickets every Friday, available on a first come, first served basis, online or in person at the gallery.

For more information, please visit the National Portrait Gallery website. 

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