Chris Steele-Perkins: The Pleasure Principle 18

Chris Steele Perkins’ book, The Pleasure Principle, was published in 1989 and brought together images made around the UK over the preceding decade. 1980s Britain had come as something of a shock to the photographer, who had by then been working abroad for some time. Reflecting on the work, Steele-Perkins asserts that he was uninterested in political images, or the ‘fashionable cynicism’ rife at the time. Instead he found himself photographing a people and a nation at play, individuals and communities seeking recourse in traditional recreation, raucous celebrations, and the occasional fist fight. The Pleasure Principle is, in spite of its setting in Thatcherite Britain, a study of hedonism and of people in search of happiness.

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