I don’t know what to think of Martin Parr. There is something that feels more exploitative compared to Venegas’ work. (Or even Tina Barney’s work). They seem closer to party photos from New York Social Diary and the like. Spectacle! I’m sort of bored by these as photographs.
But trying to understand their context and weight, I can’t help but think about these photos a lot more than I would something I like to look at for its aesthetic qualities. What makes these photos any different from documentation of slums, or of poverty? Or the show Cribs? Why do people care so much about celebrities and the wealthy? Isn’t it strange that wealthy art-buyers are buying photographs of newly wealthy people in Mexico and India?