'Café Royal Books, Documentary, Zines, and Subversion' at Martin Parr Foundation

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'Café Royal Books, Documentary, Zines, and Subversion' at Martin Parr Foundation
Each week Café Royal Books publishes a new zine priced at £6.50 focusing on a single body of work—a majority of this work is previously unpublished.



BRISTOL.- Featuring 500 zines and 167 photographs, this new exhibition celebrates the work of publishing house, Café Royal Books. For the past ten years Café Royal—founded by Craig Atkinson in 2005—has produced weekly publications focusing on post-war documentary photography linked to Britain and Ireland, in an accessible and affordable zine format. This output is the largest published print archive of post-war British documentary photography, and a champion for the unseen, underrepresented and overlooked in photography.

Each week Café Royal Books publishes a new zine priced at £6.50 focusing on a single body of work—a majority of this work is previously unpublished. The series includes work by photographers from all backgrounds from the widely-known such as Shirley Baker, Chris Killip, Markéta Luskačová and Daniel Meadows, to those whose work has been either forgotten or previously excluded from the mainstream. Collectively, the zines provide a valuable archive of cultural and social shifts in Britain and Ireland with a diverse and disparate range of subject matter from protest to folk customs, sub-culture, industry, architecture, politics and religion across both urban and rural settings. The audience for the publications is wide—they are purchased for nostalgia or as gifts, used as reference tools by the film industry, collected by universities and are held by collections including MoMA New York, Harvard University, TATE and V&A amongst others. Café Royal Books was established in 2005 and remains a family run, independent publisher.

Every hundredth title, Café Royal publishes an archive box of these publications. The exhibition presents 500 Café Royal zines from the first five archive boxes, on rotation of three boxes at a time for the duration of the show. These zines will be accessible to visitors alongside an exhibition of 167 photographs by 70 photographers published by Café Royal Books.




Under the auspices of Craig Atkinson, Cafe Royal Books have produced a remarkable archive of British documentary work by a rota of photographers that may have otherwise been overlooked. The Martin Parr Foundation is very pleased to present an exhibition of these zines and to show many images that they contain. Our remit is to give a platform to British documentary work, so this is a perfect marriage.' - Martin Parr

‘The aim for Café Royal Books has always been to gather, uncover and make this work accessible. We're very grateful to the Martin Parr Foundation — this exhibition will help expand the reach of the books and importantly, the work they include. Café Royal Books is always open to submissions and are particularly interested to hear from underrepresented photographers.’ - Craig Atkinson

Craig Atkinson was born in Liverpool in 1977. He has a Masters in Fine Art Painting and Printmaking. He began publishing in 2005, as a way to disseminate art without relying on the gallery system. He has published over 950 titles since, which are held in many international museum, library and university collections. He also works as a senior lecturer and researcher at a university in the North West of England. He lives with his wife, two sons, and dog, in Southport.

The following photographers have been published by Café Royal books. The names in bold have prints including in the exhibition:

Alan Lodge | Alejandro Guijarro | Allan Bovill | Amelia Troubridge | Arthur Tress | Barry Lewis | Barry Pitman | Bernard Plossu | Berris Connoly | Bertrand Carrière | Bill Jay | Bob Moore | Bob Watkins | Brian David Stevens | Brian Griffin | Brian Homer | Charlie Phillips | Chris Killip | Chris Miles | Chris Steele-Perkins | Claire Atkinson | Claude Le Gall | Colin McPherson | Colin Shaw | Colin Thomas | Colm Pierce | Craig Atkinson | Dafydd Jones | Daniel Meadows | Dave Sinclair | David Hoffman | David Hurn | David J Carol | David Levenson | David Moore | David Solomon | David Titlow | David Walker | David Williams | Derek Hudson | Des Gershon | Diane Bush | Document Scotland | Don Tonge | Dorothy Bohm | Douglas Corrance | Dragan Novakovic | Ed Templeton | Fran May | Frank Stewart | Garry Stuart | Geoff Howard | George Plemper | George Rodger | Gilles Rigoulet | Graham Macindoe | Grant Scott | Homer Sykes | Hugh Hood | Iain McKell | Ian Beesley | Ian MacDonald | Ian Walker | J A Mortram | Janette Beckman | Janine Wiedel | Jean-luc Olezak | Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert | Jo Spence | Joe Sterling | John Benton Harris | John Bulmer | John Claridge | John Darwell | John Davies | John Deakin | John Kippin | John Myers | John Stoddart | John Walmsley | Johny Pitts | Jonathan Mortimer | Joni Sternbach | Jos Treen | Judah Passow | Justin Leighton | Ken Grant | Kevin O’Farrell | Libby Hall | Lionel Derimais | Luis Bustamante | Luke Overin | Marc Vallée | Mark McNulty | Mark Pinder | Marketa Luscakova | Martin Parr | Martin Stott | Matthew Birchall | Matthew Murray | Michael Kerstgens | Mike Abrahams | Mike England | Mike Goldwater | Mike Seaborne | Neil Martinson | Nick Sargeant | Paddy Summerfield | Patrick Ward | Paul Baldesare | Paul Cabuts | Paul Glazier | Paul Trevor | Peter Byrne | Peter Dench | Peter Dewhurst | Peter Gazey | Peter Jones | Peter Marshall | Phil Maxwell | Phil Winnard | Philip Wolmuth | Pogus Caesar | Richard Davis | Ricky Adam | Robin Weaver | Roger Birch | Roger George Clark | Roger Tilley | Ron McCormick | Ron Reid | Rose Comiskey | Russell Boyce | Sefton Samuels | Shirley Baker | Simon Pope | Simon Roberts | Sophie Gerrard | Stephen Clarke | Stephen McCoy | Stephen McLaren | Stewart Weir | Stuart Franklin | Syd Shelton | Teena Taylor | Thierry Girard | Tilney1 | Tim Soter | Tish Murtha | Tom Hunter | Tony Bock | Tony Davis | Tony Hall | Tony O’Shea | Trevor Ashby | Tricia Porter | Uwe Bedenbecker | Victor Sloan | Virginia Turbett | Vron Ware| Wally Cassidy | Wendy Aldiss | Yan Morvan










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