Simon Roberts

Pierdom Tour

03 July - 01 September 2014

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Please click here to view an interactive map of Simon Roberts' Pierdom Tour

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Simon Roberts has spent three years travelling the coastline of Britain photographing the last remaining pleasure piers. Culminating in a comprehensive and fascinating photographic record of these monuments of Victorian engineering and eccentricity, Pierdom is a broad architectural and ethnographical study of our coast and of British society. The pleasure pier follows the story of Britain's relationship to the seaside, from the early links with the Romantics, to the engineering feats and technical advancement of the Industrial Revolution. Roberts documents the remaining piers using his signature landscape style, echoing the approach and tone of his acclaimed series, We English.

To coincide with the 200th anniversary of the construction of Ryde Pier in the Isle of Wight (the first of the British piers), Roberts' Pierdom project will be touring from July - September in 2014 creating a national exhibition. Currently confirmed venues include Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool, Kirkleatham Museum, Redcar, Quay Arts, Isle of Wight, Teign Heritage Centre, Teignmouth, Towner Gallery, Eastbourne andTurner Contemporary, Margate. Along the British coastline these galleries will be each exhibiting between 1-5 pieces from the series, usually including their most local pier. The aim of this extended exhibition of the work is to generate a national conversation to highlight the historical significance of these architectural structures, enforcing the idea of Britain's piers as cultural landmarks, tracing history and national identity from the Victorian period until now.

The project is supported by Arts Council England.

Simon Roberts (b.1974) is based in Brighton, UK. He studied a BA Hons Degree in Human Geography at the University of Sheffield (1996), a subject which has informed much of his photographic practice.  He has exhibited widely with solo shows at the National Media Museum, Bradford, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, and Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai. His work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including Landmark: Fields of Photography at Somerset House, London, and resides in major public and private collections, including the George Eastman House, Deutsche Börse Art Collection and Wilson Centre for Photography. In 2010 he was selected as the official Election Artist by the UK Parliament.  He has published three critically acclaimed monographs, Motherland (Chris Boot, 2007), We English (Chris Boot, 2009) and Pierdom (Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2013).

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