Shining Lights: Black Women Photographers in 1980s–90s Britain
Joy Gregory (ed.)
OTA-bound paperback with linen spine
19.5 x 25.2cm, 448 pages
Shining Lights is the first critical anthology to bring together the groundbreaking work of Black women photographers active in the UK during the 1980s and 1990s, providing a richly illustrated overview of a significant and overlooked chapter of photographic history. Seen through the lens of Britain’s sociopolitical and cultural contexts, the publication draws on both lived experience and historical investigation to explore the communities, experiments, collaborations, and complexities that defined the decades.
The innovative and diverse work created during this period spanned documentary and conceptual practices, including the experimental use of photomontage, self-portraiture, staged imagery, and photography in dialogue with other media. Shining Lights showcases the breadth of this work, illuminated by ephemera and archival material, historical essays, and roundtable conversations. First-hand experiences and critical reflections are provided by new writings by pioneers of the period, including Pratibha Parmar, Roshini Kempadoo, and Symrath Patti, alongside a foreword by Sonia Boyce. Taous Dahmani’s concluding essay provides a summary of key issues from an art historical perspective.
Amongst the fifty-seven photographers included are Maxine Walker, Ingrid Pollard, Claudette Holmes, Mohini Chandra, Carole Wright, Sutapa Biswas, Maud Sulter, Brenda Agard, Anita McKenzie, Mitra Tabrizian, Poulomi Desai, Virginia Nimarkoh, Nudrat Afza, Merle Van den Bosch, and Eileen Perrier.
Edited and researched by Joy Gregory, one of the period’s most influential photographic artists, alongside art historian Taous Dahmani, Shining Lights is an unparalleled contribution to the study of photography and the experiences of Black women artists.
Co-published with Autograph, London