Tish Murtha’s important and stunning photographic essay on the hardships of youth unemployment in Newcastle during the Thatcher years. Tish believed that photography could change lives for the better but sadly died of a brain aneurysm in 2013 before her dream of a book could be realised. Tish was born in South Shields, near Newcastle, in 1956, the 3rd of 10 children. She left school at 16 and had a variety of different jobs from selling hot dogs to working in a petrol station. After enrolling on a night photography course, Tish decided she wanted to become a photographer and was offered a place at the prestigious School of Documentary Photography at the University of Wales under the guidance of Magnum photographer David Hurn. The photographs were shot over a few years starting in 1979 and exhibited at Newcastle’s Side Gallery in 1981. They captured the hardship that the North East of England suffered during the Thatcher era. It really was a desperate time – a period of bitter conflict as young people grew more and more frustrated with an economic system that deprived them of a productive and meaningful future.
Photographer Tish Murtha
Hardback RP £25
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