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'Agent Provocateur, The New Connaught Rooms, Londo
Photography Jason Manning

In pictures: the sexy, sweaty world of 90s and 00s clubbing

Jason Manning’s exhibition Night by Night offers a glimpse into a bygone era of party culture

Submerged beneath the residue of intoxicants and mayhem lay the memories made and left within the walls of nightclubs... the jumbled recollections of everything that comprises ‘the night before’. Night by Night, an upcoming exhibition by photographer Jason Manning, features photos from 1997 and 2007 – perhaps the last great period of carefree hedonism before the ubiquity of the smartphone.

Manning’s work was heavily featured in the now-defunct Sleaze Nation, a highly influential publication that documented youth culture between 1996 and 2003 in all its sordid, indulgent glory. The magazine celebrated the club scene of London and beyond, with Manning’s leave-nothing-to-the-imagination photos the perfect accompaniment to edgy and blue-humoured features that composed the pages.

Running from April 1 until April 16 at Gallery 46 in Whitechapel, the exhibition features images from clubs all over the world. Be it London, Seoul, Singapore or Detroit, the images carry the shared goal of partying hard and stepping back from the expectations of a functional society. From nude wrestling and DJing to Agent Provocateur parties, Manning provides us with an unfiltered glimpse of these wild nights that would’ve otherwise gone forgotten. 

The photographer exists within these nights not as a fly on the wall but as a beetle-in-the-dung, getting up close and personal with the wide-eyed and loose-jawed club-goers. There is an overriding sense of fun to the photos, a sense of escapism, and an “anything goes” attitude that could only exist in the days before social media and smartphones. Visit the gallery above for a closer look. 

Night by Night opens on April 1 at Gallery 46 in Whitechapel and will run until April 16.

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