Search by keyword & format

For best results when searching for specific terms, use double quotation marks, e.g. "Half Moon"



Search the timeline

You can filter the timeline by date or by collection. We have also included relevant events from Arts and Politics.

Use the collection dial to view different collections.

A
P
E

Welcome to
Four Corners Archive

 

Four Corners Archive explores and documents the film and photographic heritage of Four Corners, Half Moon Photography Workshop, and Camerawork Magazine, from 1972–1987.

Four Corners and Half Moon Photography Workshop (later Camerawork) were two innovative cultural organisations, based in East London. Their early work played a major role in the development of the radical film and photographic practice characteristic of the 1970s and early 1980s.

The project brings these unique archival resources into the public realm, making this important contribution to British cultural history widely accessible for the first time.

How to use the archive

You can search our archive in different ways and even save items to your lightbox to email the link for another day.

Use the sidebar to…

   Choose a theme to search for all items and
   any articles relating to that theme

   Search by keyword and format

   View my Lightbox

   View and filter the timeline

Download our handy user manual for further functions.

Four Corners Archive is made possible through the generous support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art.

 

 

Articles

The politics of the Half Moon Photography Workshop

Politics of photography
Mathilde Bertrand, 2018


In May 1975, Jo Spence and Terry Dennett formed Photography Workshop in Islington, ‘an independent educational, research, publishing and resource project’ designed to examine historical and contemporary uses of photography. Spence and Dennett were critical of contemporary photographic practices, particularly the professionalization of the sector and its growth within a competitive market. To them, these developments undermined alternative conceptions of the medium, with historical roots in the Labour movement of the 1930s.

The workshop grew out of our dissatisfaction with current trends in British photography and our desire to contribute, as photographers, to social change. – Photography Workshop 1975 

For them, the ‘amateur’, or non-professional photographer could act as an agent of democratic change. They saw a need to “demystify” photography, to break its association with an expert and exclusive form of knowledge, to resist its absorption in fine arts spheres, and to preserve it as a technology accessible to all. 

0003200_HalfmoonCamerawork_Photograph_DavidGordon_NoNuclearWeaponsExhibition_1980_photo04.jpg

Latest

0000009_Camerawork_Magazine_Issue8_1977_cover.jpg

Behind the Lens: Paul Trevor

On 13 August 1977, the far-right National Front attempted to march from New Cross to Lewisham, leading to a violent confrontation with counter demonstrators and the police. 

Remembered today as the Battle of Lewisham, it was the first time that the National Front were prevented from marching, and the first time that riot shields were deployed by UK police.

Camerawork founder-member Paul Trevor was one of the many photographers present that day. The events, and how they were documented, became the focus of the first special issue of the magazine.  We spoke to Paul about how it came to be. 

 

 

This project is dedicated to the fond memory of Ed Barber (1949–2017), an important early member of the Half Moon Photography Workshop and Camerawork magazine, whose energy and enthusiasm helped create this project.