The Beginning of Brexit

This work was produced with a Sony World Photo Grant in 2019 and was photographed over 3 days. 

The tattooed man with a shaven head is approaching the red dragon. The man who controls the dragon tells me that he can make it breathe fire, but todays event is mostly for children he wouldn’t want to scare them. He places his puppet master arm firmly up the arse of the red dragon as the white man with the tattoos and the shaven head walks by.

A staffy runs by with an England flag. 

The Brexiteers did not want to take their seats, they only wanted to stand and chant his name, Nigel! Nigel! Nigel! The press photographers gathered at the end of the red carpet, like a line of scrimmage, whilst Brexit Party handlers shouted at them to make way for him. He walked amongst them flanked by security. A woman screamed, a photographer takes a photograph of her blurred red mouth wide open. Nigel Farage mounts the stage and stands centre forward with his Brexit Party candidates amassed behind him under olympian text stating ‘Change Politics for Good’. The photographers now surround the lip of the stage, ignoring the PR teams pleas, they aim their cameras straight up at him. He shouts, he sweats, he points and I feel like I’ve seen something like this before.

Billy Bragg is on stage singing, the sun is shining down on the protestors at Westminster. Ex-Prime Minister Theresa Mays giant head effigy is blissfully anachronistic, like a trophy, surrounded by smiling remoaners. A woman has brought her new born baby with her, a sign tells me ‘our government is off its tits, lets revoke this shit.’ A Brexiteer walks amongst them with a shaven head and a Stop Brexit sticker, he films every remoaner he argues with on his phone. He won. No one changes his mind.

the more you see, the more you know

the more you know, the more you see

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All works and texts copyright © Edward Thompson 2024