Anguished faces of the Armed Forces

The recent deaths of soldiers in Afghanistan bring a tragic poignancy to a new exhibition of works by photographer Alastair Thain at Imperial War Museum North, which opens tomorrow.

Six Royal Marines were photographed immediately after a gruelling training run using an ultra-high-definition camera (the same kind of technology used by NASA to photograph Earth from space); every bruise, fleck of dirt and bead of sweat is starkly visible and the portraits are as unsettling as they are intimate. Celebrated photographer Thain, who has shot for Esquire, is showing the photographs together for the first time (three were included in Tate Britain's How We Are exhibition in 2007). The prints, exhibited outside the gallery, will be a staggering five metres high - so you shouldn't have any trouble tracking them down.

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Marines: Portraits by Alastair Thain, 18 July to 18 October, External Spaces, Imperial War Museum North, Manchester M17, www.iwm.org.uk