Side Photographic Collection

Through its own production, support, purchase and retrieval, Amber has built up a significant photographic collection. Where possible, we're putting this work online.

The photographic engagement with the North of England has produced a remarkable enough body of work, but since Side Gallery opened in 1977, this has been extended through exhibition purchases and donations to include a wide-ranging representation of the international classic and contemporary documentary that continues to inspire us. Where we hold the rights and/or where the photographer gives permission, we're committed to putting as much of this work online as possible. As funding allows, new exhibitions will appear and some exhibitions will be developed further. Side Gallery, through the work of which so much of this collection has been achieved, is supported by Arts Council England.
Arts Council Logo

Aftermath: Foot and Mouth in Tow Law

Dean Chapman (Photographer)

A narrative from Dean Chapman's 'Shifting Ground' work, documenting South West Durham for Amber's 'Coalfield Stories', which looks at the aftermath of the 2001 foot & mouth epidemic and the impact of the Inkerman Burial Site on Tow Law.

American Mining Communities

Russell Lee (Photographer)

Mining communities in West Virginia and Kentucky, USA, documented in the 1940s by one of the key photographers, who, along with Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange and others, developed the classic Farm Securities Administration photography in the 1930s.

Appleby Horse Fair

Dave Thomas (Photographer)

A documentation of the annual gathering in the North of England of travellers and others involved in horse culture, developed over the fairs that took place in 1969 and 1970.


Mik Critchlow (Photographer)

A documentation of the Northumberland mining town by a photographer from that community, developed in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Belmont Group Day Out

Graciela Iturbide (Photographer)

A Mothers & Toddlers group from Walker in Newcastle upon Tyne photographed on an outing to South Shields in 1988, when the photographer was on Tyneside with her exhibition Juchitan.

Bitter Harvest

David Lurie (Photographer)

The working conditions on the fruit farms of South Africa’s Western Cape, documented in 1989.

Building the Tyne Bridge

Unknown (Photographer)

Photographs from the collection of Dorman Long, the builders, of the construction of Newcastle upon Tyne’s George V or Tyne Bridge in the 1920s. They used their existing design for the Sydney Harbour Bridge, but the Tyne Bridge was completed first.

Burma, Exiles from the Golden Land

Dean Chapman (Photographer)

Successive Burmese military dictatorships have made the once prosperous southeast Asian nation one of the world's most impoverished failed states. Opposition forces are not tolerated. Pro-democracy uprisings have been answered with bloody and brutal clampdowns in which unknown numbers have been imprisoned, tortured, disappeared or murdered. For those who chose to flee, refuge in a developed nation, such as the UK, can provide a new beginnings and unparalleled opportunities, but the instinct to campaign and work for regime change and democracy in Burma remains undimmed.

Burma: Darkness in the Golden Land

Dean Chapman (Photographer)

Documentation of life in Burma under the junta that seized power in 1988. The photographs were taken between 1990 and 2001, part of the same engagement that led to Dean Chapman's book and exhibition, Karenni.


Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen (Photographer)

The seminal documentation of a threatened and eventually demolished working class, terraced house community in Newcastle upon Tyne’s East End by a founder member of Amber, who lived there when the collective first moved to the North East of England in 1969. Book available. See also Amber's film, Byker.