Peter Mitchell
A New Refutation of the Viking 4 Space Mission

Noel and his Lads. Monday 22 May 1978. Noon, Eastgate, Leeds © Peter Mitchell

Francis Craven. Sunday 22 April 1979, 2 p.m. Woodhouse Moor, Leeds © Peter Mitchell

Blindbacks, Leeds, 1974 © Peter Mitchell

Scott, Dean, Neil. & Gaudy the dog. Sunday 25 June 1978 2 pm. Westmorland Road, Sheffield © Peter Mitchell

[Pictured] collection of vintage c-type exhibition prints with screen printed window mounts.

This set of pictures by Peter Mitchell was pioneering in its early use of colour. In the 1970s when this work was made, black and white was seen as the primary medium of ‘serious’ photography, with colour being mainly the domain of commercial and family snapshot photography.

For A New Refutation of the Viking 4 Space Mission, Mitchell assumed the fictional viewpoint of an extraterrestrial visitor to the city of Leeds and made topographical images surveying the human built-environment. The resulting images show a mixture of people and places that appear ‘strangely familiar’. These items are from the original exhibition at Impressions Gallery in 1979, for which he utilised the language of space exploration further by screen printing window mounts for his frames with grids and nasa style illustrations.

Martin Parr visited this exhibition and has mentioned it as one of his key influences in his own move to colour; “The show was so far ahead of its time that no-one knew exactly what to say or how to react, apart from total bewilderment. I am happy to report that I was immediately converted, and delighted in the novelty of this serious colour work. I had first seen colour work emerging from the USA a few years earlier, in the images of William Eggleston and Stephen Shore amongst others, but had not experienced this within our native shores.” – Martin Parr

Martin Parr Foundation houses a large number of modern prints by Peter Mitchell, both c-type and pigment prints in addition to these vintage works. There are a total of 86 prints in the collection at varying sizes.

Vintage c-type, modern c-type, and pigment prints

Varying sizes.



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