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Trowell, I.M. (2017)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects:
The fairground is a somewhat magical and uncharted realm of illusion, deception, thrill and adventure. It offers a glimpse of the improbable and impossible, and a taste or touch of the unattainable. This article looks at the crossover of photography and the British fairground following the gradual take-up of photography in the post-war period. It briefly covers early traditions concomitant with the specialised practice of photography, then it identifies photographic practices on the fairground through distinct communities of engagement including professional and amateur photographers attracted to the spectacle of the fair, ethnographic explorers, dedicated enthusiasts, showpeople and the general public of “punters”. In each case photographs from these communities are presented as well as a selection of photographs depicting these communities of photographers in action. The article concludes with the current situation of camera phone technology, social media and digitally manipulated photographic art as a new aesthetic of the fairground.

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