The visual iconography of Scotland—Highland games, stunning landscapes, bagpipers—transformed by Parr into the outlandish and unfamiliar
Martin Parr has been taking photographs of Scotland for more than 25 years. From tourists on the rainy streets of Edinburgh to agricultural shows in Orkney and the Outer Hebrides, Parr approached Scotland with his inimitable eye, building up a huge archive of photographs in the process. Wry and affectionate, simultaneously attuned to local color and the universality of human eccentricity, Parr’s photographic vision finds the magnificent absurdity in everyday life.
Though Parr is a prolific creator of photobooks, his archive of Scottish images has remained largely unpublished; in fact, his Scottish photographs represent his largest unpublished body of work to date. Martin Parr: Think of Scotland collects these images together for the first time on the occasion of his solo exhibition at the newly reopened Aberdeen Art Gallery. In Think of Scotland, readers can find the expected visual iconography of Scotland—the Highland Games, the stunning landscapes, the bagpipers—but all given that unique Parr twist that transforms the expected and the banal into something outlandish and unfamiliar.
British photojournalist and collector Martin Parr (born 1952) knew he wanted to become a documentary photographer from the time he was 14 years old. His interest in photography was piqued by his grandfather, who was also a photographer. Parr studied photography at Manchester Polytechnic from 1970 to 1973 and began his career as a professional photographer in the mid-1970s, becoming a full member of the Magnum Photographic Cooperative in 1994.