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Tish

Paul Sng | 2023 | 90 MINS
UK
Focus on the Documentary

A riveting tribute to Tyneside photographer Tish Murtha, who lived a life as tough as those she shot in different eras of deprivation and marginalisation.

★★★★ The Guardian

In Detail

Tish chronicled working-class lives in the north east in the 1970s and 80s (and also those of Soho sex workers in London), earning for herself the nickname “Demon Snapper” in the papers.

In capturing the reality of poverty and deprivation in communities where the misery of unemployment had been allowed to settle by Westminster, Murtha showed her subjects’ humour, optimism and refusal to be cowed – particularly in the faces of children.

The film is presented with enormous humanity and warmth by Murtha’s grownup daughter Ella, who is an eerie likeness of her late mother.

The centrally important point is that Murtha was not an outsider: she was a part of the people whose lives she recorded.

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