Martin Amis’ photo book The Gamblers is the culmination of his long-term project on the racecourses of the South of England. The Gamblers is an affectionate portrait of the racing public, a tribe of super-informed fans, an eccentric mix of classes and social backgrounds, who come together to bet on the next winner.
Amis immerses himself in the racing crowd, camera at the ready, betting on himself in search of the next subject. Despite having covered a large number of races for more than a decade, with an extreme variety of cameras and shooting styles, Amis has managed to skillfully compile his images into a single story.
Filled with moments of gentle humour, The Gamblers takes you through highs and lows, moments of tension and relaxation, to the frenetic, jubilant energy of the winning horse.
“One of my fondest childhood memories is my regular trips to the races with my father. I loved watching the horse races, but I loved watching the diverse cast of characters betting on them even more. The smell of beer and tobacco filled the air, the bookmakers’ chants of the latest odds broke up the animated conversations of the gamblers as I helped my father place his bets. I loved every moment and continued to gamble and enjoy horse racing in my adult life. As a photographer, it was a very obvious subject to focus my camera lens on”.
– Martin Amis