48 Hours On Clapham High Street

Omnibus, 1 Clapham Common Northside, Clapham, London
Event has ended
This event ended on Sunday 30th of April 2017


Venue Information

Omnibus Theatre
Clapham Common Northside, SW4 0QW

Nearest Stations

Clapham Common 0.22 miles



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Award-winning photographer Jim Grover unveils “48 Hours On Clapham High Street”, a unique photo-essay and exhibition which captures the complete transformation from day to night of one of South London’s most well-known high streets.

The difference between the two personalities of Clapham High Street - daytime shoppers and night-time clubbers - is amplified by Grover’s unique observations and approach. The result is a set of images, quotes and analyses that encapsulate the many and varied ways that people experience “their” high street.

This social documentary also includes some of the independent businesses (10 have been trading on Clapham high street for over 30 years) struggling to survive and who now face a new economic burden in the form of sharply increased rates bills from April given the Business Rates Revaluation.

For the project, Grover limited himself to just 48 hours of shooting time. To emphasise the stark contrast between the street’s typical, mundane, daytime routine and its intense weekend nightlife, when young revellers from all around London swarm in, attracted by the numerous pubs and clubs, Grover adopted an unusual approach. During the daytime hours (from 5am to 5pm) he only photographed the south side of the street, working only in colour. In contrast, during the night time hours (from 5pm to 5am) he only photographed the north side of the street, only working in black and white.

Grover’s photographs capture a rich diversity of scenes from everyday life. Beauty and ugliness; chaos and tranquillity; youth and age; love; compassion; tenderness; companionship; resilience; and humour, are all played out in front of the over-looked backdrop of a typical British high street.

He adds: “In some ways this is ‘just a high street’, like any other. But in Clapham some very different worlds are seeking to co-exist on a single street, creating intrigue and tension. And that is what made it such a fascinating photographic subject.”

This exhibition follows on from Grover’s highly successful “Of Things Not Seen” photo essay in which he documented a year in the life of a London Priest, which was exhibited at the OXO Gallery last year.

This exhibition, held at Omnibus, Clapham’s former library now transformed into a multi-arts centre, is supplemented with analyses of Clapham high street’s daily life. For instance, 4000 people were recorded at a single point on the north side of the high street on Saturday night (11pm - 3am), double the number recorded in the same timeframe on the Monday morning! Grover also interviewed over 100 residents and workers on the High Street, recorded their key quotes which highlight the wide variety of opinions and reactions that the street provokes.

Curator Katy Barron, senior director of Michael Hoppen, one of the world’s leading photographic galleries, selected the set of 48 images: 24 in colour and 24 in black and white, following on from her curation of Jim’s “Of things not seen”.


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