The pictures is based on artist Syd Shelton’s photographs taken during 1976-1981 of the national movement foun ded by rock- and reggae musicians that changed the British nation for good. Through Shelton’s photographs that document and reflect the time, it is possible to see how deep racism had infiltrated the society in Great Britain 40 years ago.
Racist jokes were openly broadcasted on television and right-wing groups patrolled the streets. The musicians and artists had had enough and so Rock Against Racism was born. The core of the movement were the concerts where both black and white musicians performed on stage. ‘’Up until then black bands only played to black audiences and vice versa. RAR changed that completely.’’, says Shelton.
‘’With the Rock Against Racism-movement we wanted to make antiracism popular by showing how absurd racism is. Different people from different backgrounds were part of the movement and what brought us all together was antiracism and the love of music’’, Shelton adds.
According to Syd Shelton, the movement created a unique music culture that brought artists and activists to work together for a mutual goal. In his photographs, Shelton documented the artists that were part of the movement. Amongst these were artists such as The Clash, Elvis Costello, Misty in Roots, Tom Robinson, Au Pairs and The Specials.
Rock Against Rasism exhibition runs from 1st June until 2nd August 2016 and is organised in collaboration with the Finnish Institute in London, Autograph ABP, Tiketti Galleria, Tavastia, Amnesty International Finnish section, Finnish League for Human Rights, The Advisory Board for Ethnic Relations, Radio Helsinki and Our International Finland.
1. STEPNEY, LONDON (1977)
2. SALFORD, MANCHESTER (1980)
3. WEST BELFAST (1980)
4. NEW CROSS ROAD, LEWISHAM, LONDON 13 AUGUST (1977)
5. NEW CROSS, LONDON 13 AUGUST (1977)
6. JUBILEE STREET, STEPNEY LONDON (1997)
7. LEWISHAM, LONDON JUNE (1977)
8. CLIFTON RISE, LEWISHAM, LONDON 13 AUGUST (1977)
9. LEWISHAM, LONDON 13 AUGUST (1977)
10. HONOUR GARDE, 13 AUGUST (1977)
11.LEWISHMAN, LONDON AUGUST (1977)
12.NEW CROSS ROAD, LEWISHMAM, LONDON 13 AUGUST (1977)
13.BRICK LANE, LONDON JUNE (1978)
14.BRICK LANE, LONDON JUNE (1978)
15.BROCWELL PARK, TOWER HAMLETS, LONDON, 30 APRIL (1978)
16.VICTORIA PARK, TOWER HAMLETS LONDON, 30 APRIL (1978)
18.BROCWELL PARK, BRIXTON, 24 SEPTEMBER (1978)
19.BRICK LANE, LONDON (1980)
20.VICTORIA PARK, 30 APRIL (1978)
21.CENTRAL LONDONPOLYTECHNIC, SEPTEMBER (1978)
25.RAINBOW THEATRE, LONDON (1979)
26.RAINBOW THEATRE, LONDON (1979)
27.VICTORIA PARK, EAST LONDON 30 APRIL (1978)
28.HACKNEY, EAST LONDON (1979)
29.BRIXTON, LONDON (1977)
32.CROMER, NORFOLK (1979)
33.THE FALLS ROAD, WEST BELFAST (1978)
35.ALEXANDRA PALACE, LONDON (1979)
36.WEST RUNTON PAVILIO (1979)
37.SOUTHGATE, NORTH LONDON (1980)
38.HACNEY, EAST LONDON (1979)
39.BETHNAL GREEN, EAST LONDON (1978)
40.CROMER, NORFOLK (1979)
41.HACKNEY, EAST LONDON (1979)
44.PETTICOAT LANE, EAST LONDON (1979)
46.HACKNEY, EAST LONDON (1980)
47.HACKNE Y, LONDON (1979)
48.SOUTHALL, LONDON 23 APRIL (1979)
49.LOWER FALLS, WEST BELFAST (1980)
50.BRICK LANE, LONDON(1979)
54.BERRY STREET STUDIOS, LONDON (1981)
55.POTTERNEWTON PARK, LEEDS (1981)
56.POTTERNEWTON PARK, LEEDS (1980)
57.POTTERNEWTON PARK, LEEDS (1981)
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