It was the best of times it was the worst of times.
Maligned, misunderstood and fetishized the 1980’s stands as the decade when post-modern life began in the west, and London was at the epicenter of this shift.
An explosion of creativity took place against a backdrop of radical social change. No longer would the state look after you from cradle to grave – now it was every man for himself, greed is good and the markets are the hand of god.
London became a city of tribes. The vast youth culture categories of the preceding decades shattered into shards. It was the decade that sub-culture as a way of life reached it’s zenith before giving way to it’s inevitable scene surfing conclusion.
Ridgers documented this cultural moment obsessively. Punks, post-punks, cyber-punks, gothic punks, mods, hard mods, Trojan skins, racist skins, ska, reggae, dub, early electronica, synth pop, acid house, happy hardcore, Blitz Kids, New Romantics, Hip-Hop, Rap, Electro, Break Beat, Techno, Rave – these were all sub-cultural spaces with scenes attached in London in the 1980’s.