Fri 24 November 2023 – Sat 27 January 2024

Photography on the Move: The Half Moon Touring Shows 1976 - 1984


Discover how trailblazing photography exhibitions toured 1970s Britain with the help of a humble laminating machine.

Free admission 
Open Wednesday - Saturday 11.00am - 6.00pm

Winter break closure: 17 December - 5 January 

Four Corners’ latest exhibition tells the remarkable story of the Half Moon touring shows, revealing a little-known moment in British photographic history. 

In 1976, photographers at East London’s Half Moon Gallery developed an innovative approach to exhibiting. With little money, a leaky roof and a DIY attitude, they arranged their work on card panels and ran them through a laminator, creating unpretentious exhibitions-in-a-box that travelled the country via British Rail.

Documenting working lives and rural traditions, shedding light on international conflicts and injustices closer to home, the Half Moon touring shows introduced powerful imagery by an emerging generation of socially engaged photographers including Daniel Meadows, Susan Meiselas and Chris Steele-Perkins, alongside the work of activists and artist-educators. Their visually striking sequences of images and text offer a compelling picture of 1970s political concerns and social conditions that still resonates today. 

Bypassing elitist arts institutions, the exhibitions toured to alternative venues including community centres, left-wing bookshops, student unions, churches, a prison and even a laundrette. By 1984, over fifty shows had reached people across the UK, playing a pivotal role in how documentary photography was seen and used. 

Photography on the Move offers a unique opportunity to see some of the surviving original panels, alongside archival material that tells the story of their production. With the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Four Corners has digitised many of the touring shows, a selection of which visitors can view in their entirety.


The Guardian

Aesthetica magazine


Photography on the Move: the story behind the laminated touring shows |
18 January | 6.30 - 8.00 PM 

Half Moon Photography Workshop and Cockpit Gallery members Graham Evans, Mike Goldwater and Claire Grey join us to share the story behind laminated touring shows and to discuss how this radical format might inform photographic practice today.

Book here

Photography on the Move: Gina Glover and Janine Wiedel in Conversation |
27 January | 3.00 - 4.00 PM 

Photographers Gina Glover and Janine Wiedel join us for an informal discussion in the gallery, where they will be sharing insights into their touring exhibitions that explored themes of feminism and education.

Book here


Gallery Late and Book Sale | 14 December | 5.30 - 8.00 PM 
Enjoy a glass of mulled wine and after-hours viewing of our Photography on the Move exhibition, with the chance to pick up some limited-edition publications and prints.

Image: Exterior of the Half Moon theatre, with posters for the touring exhibition Factory Photographs by Nick Hedges, 1977.
©Nick Hedges