Private Viewing - open to all, but numbers limited - Thursday 7 April
General Exhibition dates: March 18 to May 8 2022
Two new solo exhibitions at OOF Gallery dive deep into the culture of football fandom. Martin Parr, one of the world’s leading photographers, has documented the national game for decades, while Corbin Shaw is a young artist who uses football flags and memorabilia to subvert traditional ideas of masculinity. Together, these exhibitions look at what it means to watch football, and how the game is the beating heart of our society.
From freezing cold northern stadiums to sunburned shirtless fans, Martin Parr has been documenting football and the culture around it since the start of his career. But the game itself never appears in his work. Instead, Parr watches the watchers, capturing people at the game, celebrating, commiserating, or just meditatively lost in the moment of following their team. That’s what this exhibition is about: the unity, passion, ecstasy and community of football.
The show features a series of images of celebrating football fans, and a room of rarely seen early black and white photos of stark, desolate stadiums in Bolton, Bradford, Halifax and Hartlepool.
This is an exhibition about how much football means to so many people, how essential it is to their daily lives. You will see yourself reflected in it, and your friends, your family, because in capturing football fans, Parr has created possibly his most earnestly positive portrait of British culture.
This is a celebration of obsession and belief, of cold nights on concrete terraces, of chucking your pint in the air in jubilation. It’s a celebration of football.
The language of football is as deep, complex and nuanced as any other language on earth, and it’s at the heart of young English artist Corbin Shaw’s new show of flag and pennant works.
Each piece in the exhibition is adorned with phrases and sayings that will be familiar to any football fan, words filled with power for millions of people, written across the type of flags that are hung around stadiums up and down the country.
Works like ‘Promised You A Miracle’ and ‘Football Without Cans Is Nothing’ use emotional, funny, sincere phrases that tell a story about how important this game is to so many people.
Shaw’s work is full of double meanings, questioning the intentions behind the things we say to each other, twisting from aggressive to supportive, humorous to heart-wrenching, nasty to loving. By mining pop culture and terrace chants, Shaw has created something special: aphorisms for hooligans, proverbs for casuals and adages for football fans.
- Mark A Phillips
- Venue Information
Entrance to the gallery is via the Spurs Shop at the Tottenham Experience, Thursday to Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 11am-4pm, Monday 10am-5pm.
- The historic Warmington House was painstakingly restored to its former glory by the Club, having previously been on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk register.
- It is recorded as having been built in 1828 - its name derived from James Warmington, a farmer and coal merchant who occupied the property from 1851-76.
744 High Road