London Burlesque – A Family Album
Photographer Angus Stewart spent ten years backstage with London’s burlesque community, getting to know the performers and documenting their shared world to create what he calls ‘a family album’. From the beginning, his focus was on the personalities, rather than the performances. He deliberately eschews the ‘big reveal’. Instead, his photographs capture the friendships, the laughter and the camaraderie that characterise the burlesque scene. We are introduced to a thriving community that values dedication and loyalty, and where the exotic is always laced with humour; and we hear from performers Rara Avis, Belle de Beauvoir, Cerise Rei, Lady Cheek, Lady May, Lynn Ruth Miller and Vixen Victoire. Burlesque can be provocative, it can be political, and it can be serious. But it can also be a lot of fun.
‘I discovered that while some performers earn a living from burlesque, most have other jobs – anything from seamstresses to doctors, to company directors. This huge melting pot of professional experience, coupled with a variety of reasons for wanting to perform, means that personal development is encouraged. It’s an incredibly supportive community, and I wanted to try to capture that spirit.’ – Angus Stewart
Angus Stewart is a London-based photographer with a focus on social documentary photography and portraiture. His work with the circus, burlesque and cabaret communities in London has produced a collection of work that depicts not just the activity on stage, but the cast of characters that supports it.
- Angus Stewart
- Jean-Michel Dentand
25 × 20cm
10 × 8 in
152pp including 16 gatefolds
50 black and white photographs
Published in a numbered edition of 1,000 copies
£50 | $75