Gavin Watson: Oh! What Fun We Had


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ISBN: 9788862086349 Category:

Gavin Watson


Not just an ambitious restoration of a fascinating unseen archive, but a book that takes on the gargantuan task of shifting the collective memory around key moments in British youth culture history, with a mesmerizing force of honesty and humanity.

By the man who’s previous books Skins (1994), and Skins & Punks (2008), have been hailed as modern classics, Damiani is pleased to announce the latest Gavin Watson monograph, titled Oh the Fun We Had!

Appropriating the Madness lyrics as an anthem of its times, this intimate selection of photography disrupts the notion of skinheads and council estate residents as problematic figures in an almost endearing manner while still preserving the subversive character of the cult of youth. At an undisputed time of little optimism, Oh the Fun We Had! is a very important fly-on-the-wall testimonial and reminder that no matter how difficult life is; so it shall also be Fun… At least when captured from the right angle.

Additional information

Weight 1358 g
Dimensions 24.1 x 31 cm
Publisher name Damiani Editore
Publication date 1 July 2019
Number of pages
Format Hardback
Dimensions 24.1 x 31 cm
Weight 1358 g


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Gavin Watson was born in London in 1965 and grew up on a council estate in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. He started soon taking pictures of 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. His images documented the early D.I.Y. party culture that sprang up around London. His photographs were published in the books Skins (1994) and Skins and Punks (2008), with director Shane Meadows citing them as an inspiration for his film This is England (2006). His Rave images were published in the book Raving '89 (2009). In 2011 and 2012 Watson photographed campaigns for Dr Martens and Farah. He continues to take photographs and has been a longtime collaborator with the singer Plan B.