exhibition: 'Rock Against Racism' - gallery oldham
Syd Shelton’s photographs capture one of the most intriguing periods in British post-war history. Between 1976 and 1981, the movement Rock Against Racism (RAR) confronted racist ideology in the streets, parks and town halls of Britain. RAR was formed by a collective of musicians and political activists to fight racism and fascism through music. Under the slogan ‘Love Music, Hate Racism’, it showcased reggae and punk bands on the same stage, attracting large multicultural audiences. Shelton photographed performers such as The Clash, Elvis Costello, The Au Pairs, The Specials and protests such as the Anti National Front Demonstration in Lewisham in 1977.
This exhibition revisits the energy of RAR and the creative alliances that were formed. Shelton’s photographs remind us that Rock Against Racism was a particular treatise on belonging in Britain.
14 March – 30 May