’70 SKINS: A WATSON THROWBACK

Gavin Watson, a photographer born in London in 1965 who grew up on a council estate in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, and gained his notoriety for the photo’s he took on a Hanimex camera from Woolworths in his early teens. After duckin’ school at the age of sixteen, Watson moved back to London and became a darkroom assistant at Camera Press. He continued to photograph his younger brother Neville and their group of skinhead friends in High Wycombe.

The ‘Wycombe Skins’ were part of the working-class skinhead subculture brought together by a love of ska music and fashion. Although skinhead style had become associated with the right-wing extremism of political groups like the National Front in the 1970s, Watson’s photographs document a time and place where the subculture was racially mixed and inclusive. And this is the reason why I wanted to share these images. To reaffirm the reality that Britain is mixed and inclusive. And despite times of economic and social unrest –  like that of the 70s – the spirit these photo’s represent seems lost today in most forms of art – particularly photography and the plethora of creative products of this era; where everyone seems to be out for themselves and chasing the star…. but, that’s a whole other discussion for another day.

For now though, enjoy some percy’s from his book ‘Skins’ which captures the bright side of what was otherwise a dark period for the working class of all races.


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POSTED BY: @TIMI.WATSONROSE

 

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