History, Mission & Vision

The Photographers' Gallery (TPG)  was founded in London’s Covent Garden in 1971 as the first public gallery in the UK dedicated to the photographic medium.  From the outset it has been instrumental in promoting photography’s value to the wider world and ensuring its position as one of our most significant artforms. 

In May 2012, as part of the organisation’s ambitions for growth as well as to meet audience expectations around scale and quality of presentations, the Gallery moved to a new venue in Ramillies Street, W1.  The five-storey building, located in the heart of the West end and at the gateway to Soho - one of the most creative square miles in the world - was designed by award-winning architects O’Donnell + Tuomey.  It offers visitors three floors of world-class exhibition space; a flexible education studio hosting a range of events (including talks, courses and learning activities); a media wall for the display of digital projects; a café; a bookshop and a dedicated space for the discovery and sales of established and emergent photographers represented by the Gallery.   

Over the years TPG has introduced such international photographers as Juergen Teller, Sebastião Salgado, Dave Heath, Rinko Kawauchi, Roman Vishniac, Andreas Gursky and Taryn Simon to British audiences, whilst also championing the work of UK-based practitioners including Martin Parr, Shirley Baker, Zineb Sedira and Corinne Day. It has also presented major exhibitions curated from archives including the prestigious ‘Black Star Collection’ and the feminist avant-garde ‘Verbund Collection’.  Each year, it presents The Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize, a prestigious £30,000 award presented to the most ground-breaking and extraordinary contemporary artists and projects, as well as delivering a variety of initiatives to identify and champion new talent and encourage diversity, innovation and excellence.    

Consistently pushing the boundaries of form and presentation, The Photographers’ Gallery’s continues to lead the way in championing photography for the widest possible audiences with the aim to increase public engagement with, and awareness of, this universally relevant and inclusive medium. 

Delve further into the History of the Gallery.

Download a complete list of exhibitions programme

Our mission:  To champion photography for everyone

Our Vision:  To stimulate public understanding and deeper engagement with photography and its value to society.

Our Key Aims:

1.      To be the UK’s leading photographic gallery with international impact

2.     To be the driving force for debate and new thinking about the role of the photographic image in society today

3.     To place innovative learning, diversity and excellence at our core

4.     To ensure long term sustainability for the gallery and all its activities

The Photographers’ Gallery is a registered charity that welcomes visitors from across world. We are part funded by Arts Council England as well as through generous support from individuals, companies and trusts and foundations. All profits from our Bookshop, Print Sales Gallery and the Café directly contribute to our exhibitions and public programme.