Jacob Charles Wilson

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The collective that changed Preston's cultural scene: Northern paradise

for Huck Magazine
A crowd of young people carry banners and march

In 2009, in the ex-industrial city of Preston, dismayed by the belief that the only culture worth anything was to be found in London, Adam Murray and Robert Parkinson launched Preston Is My Paris. This amateur effort grew organically, from a homemade zine to exhibitions, film screenings, and club nights. Their work in the city of Preston and the wider North West introduced them to many new friends and helped start the careers of a number of artists working today. I talked to them about their latest publication, which looks back over the past decade to take stock of their achievements and suggest ways forward for the future.

Murray points out that when they started, the self-publishing world was much smaller. "There wasn't the infrastructure there is now, there were very few book fairs, and there were none of the prizes," he remembers. "There was nobody really writing or talking about photobooks to any real depth. We just did everything very instinctively."