In pictures: Exhibition captures life behind the scenes at the circus

Ever fancied running away with the circus? If so, then a new exhibition opening this weekend will be right up your street. 

Acclaimed photographer Peter Lavery has spent the last 50 years following circuses up and down the UK, capturing what goes on behind the scenes along the way. Now, the first exhibition documenting this five-decade-long project is opening its doors at The Harley Gallery on the Welbeck estate from 3 February to 15 April.

Part of Circus250 – a UK-wide celebration of 250 years of the circus – ‘Circus Work’ will showcase a collection of both black and white and colour photographs, showing circus performers relaxing while off duty, practising, getting ready to perform, costumed and revealingly off-guard.

Lisa Gee, Director at The Harley Gallery, said: “Peter Lavery’s pictures capture a world unknown to most of us. He takes us behind the curtain to see the grit amidst the glamour, the contrast between the mundane and the magical and reveals the hard work and humanity of this unique community.”

See what’s in store at the exhibition and take a look through some of Peter Lavery’s pictures above.

‘Circus Work’ runs from 3 February to 15 April 2018. More information can be found here

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