• Photo exhibition Graeme Oxby

Photo exhibition 2024

Graeme Oxby
The Kings of England



Guided tour

Thursday, May 9, 2024, 15.00
Saturday, May 11, 2024, 15.00

In English with an interpreter in German

The Kings of England

Elvis remains an important cultural touchstone in working class communities across the United Kingdom. This has to do with the story of a poor truck driver who achieved unimaginable fame and wealth. It's about the songs, nostalgia and community. It's also about love and faith and dressing up and having a good time.

A chance encounter with someone I knew ten years earlier sparked my interest in this important subculture. I met Parkin at a gas station. He was putting unleaded into a huge Cadillac and was wearing a gold jacket and sunglasses. "I changed my name to Elvis and I'm living the dream," he said. I was tied up.

I began by documenting the sheer spectacle I was seeing—the exuberance, the color, and the drama of the Elvis impersonators I met at conventions, competitions, in pubs and clubs, and even in retirement homes.

As the project matured, I began to appreciate and photograph the people and their stories behind the performances. Individual stories emerged about the dedication, tragedy and resilience of the people who are at the heart of this story.

Graeme Oxby

Portrait Graeme Oxby

Graeme Oxby is a documentary and portrait photographer focusing on class politics, entertainment and religion in the UK. He is the program leader for the BA Photography and MA Photography at the University of Lincoln.

Graeme Oxby has worked in the advertising, music and entertainment industries since the late 1980s and has made music videos and commercials as well as commissioned for television and film in London, Dublin and Manchester. He also traveled on assignments from Angola and Mozambique to the former Soviet Union, the Far East, and North and Central America.

He was Artistic Director of the Hull International Photography Festival in 2015 and was commissioned by Hull City of Culture in 2017 to run the Hull Beermat Photography Festival, the winners of which were selected by Martin Parr.

Graeme has been published regularly in national and international publications including Stern, The Guardian, Der Spiegel, Vice, Huck Magazine, Metro, BBC and The Times Literary Supplement. Graeme's five-year project about Elvis impersonators, entitled The Kings Of England, was published by Bluecoat Press in October 2018.

Graeme's work is in the collection of the Michael Komechak OSB Art Gallery, Benedictine University in Chicago IL and he is represented worldwide by Institute Artists.


Main sponsors

photo video zumstein


Resident community of Münsingen
fotoclub münsingen
swisslos cultural funding for the canton of Bern