Course | Inside Out: The Workings of a Photography Gallery

10:00am, Thu 02 Feb 2023 - 01:00pm, Thu 30 Mar 2023

How are photographic galleries and museums changing to meet the needs of 21st century audiences and photographers?

Exterior shot of The Photographers' Gallery

Course | Inside Out: The Workings of a Photography Gallery


How are photographic galleries and museums changing to meet the needs of 21st century audiences and photographers?

This event is part of our Past Programme

Spanning eight weeks, this course goes behind the scenes to look at the different areas of work of The Photographer’s Gallery (TPG). It will investigate ways for presenting, engaging with, marketing and acquiring photography today.

At a time of unprecedented public interest in the medium, and with an international community of photographers growing, we will think through the opportunities and challenges of how a medium-specific gallery functions. It will invite reflection, criticality and new thinking. 

Led by author, educator and photo-historian Dr Sara Dominici


Taking place weekly at the Gallery, sessions include a blend of lectures, group discussions and presentations. Each week will feature guest contributions from TPG staff, photographers and artists.

Who is this for?

Open to all who are interested in photography and for those who want to gain a first-hand understanding of how museums and galleries influence the production, circulation and interpretation of photography today.

Produced in partnership with MA Museums, Galleries & Contemporary Culture at the University of Westminster 


Session 1 | Photographic Organisations in Britain since the 1970s on Thu 2 Feb

Starting just over 50 years ago, this session looks at the need for a space such as TPG – the UK’s first public gallery dedicated to photography – and considers the changing landscape of the photography sector over this time. What can we learn from this history about the cultural and social contexts that have shaped photography?

Session 2 | Managing Photographic Institutions Today on Thu 9 Feb

How do teams collaborate to meet wider gallery aims and priorities? This session examines the gallery as an organisation and its working culture. We will evaluate the extent to which this reflects or departs from how other photographic institutions operate, and the opportunities and challenges of working across multiple teams with various areas of expertise and experience.

Session 3 | Photography and the Marketplace on Thu 16 Feb

This session considers the role of commercial galleries and art fairs in the field of photography. What impact do they have in supporting public understanding and deeper engagement with photography and its value to society?

Session 4 | Digital Curating on Thu 23 Feb

What do we mean by ‘digital curating’? What do digital positions in a photography gallery context entail? This session explores the role of the digital in photography culture and the ethical and social implications of technological change in image-production.

Session 5 | Audiences and Engagement on Thu 9 Mar

Education and audiences are central to the Gallery’s mission. In this session we will look at how TPG works to foster an open exchange of ideas and to learn from its audiences with local and global communities, and in partnership with other organisations.

Session 6 | Exhibition Strategies on Thu 16 Mar

What does the role of the curator entail? This week’s session will explore the way approaches to exhibiting photography have changed in light of developments in contemporary photography and art. 

Session 7 | Marketing, Press and Communications on Thu 23 Mar 

The Gallery is a complex public space that caters for a range of interests and needs. This session looks at the opportunities for further engagement created by the Communications team and the specific role they have in making TPG’s activities visible and in shaping visitors’ experience beyond gallery walls.

Session 8 | The Future of the Photographic Institutions on Thu 30 Mar

This final session looks back at the preceding weeks to revisit and debate any issues and key questions about the responsibilities of the Gallery and the priorities for the sector in the future.


Author, educator and photo-historian Dr Sara Dominici is based at the University of Westminster, where she is the Course Leader for the MA in Art and Visual Culture, and the Course Co-Leader for the MAs Museums, Galleries, and Contemporary Culture, and Museums, Galleries, and Contemporary Culture with Professional Experience. Sara is the author of Reading the Travel Image (Routledge, 2018) and of numerous articles on the relationship between photography and modern vision, the role of the darkroom, transport technologies, the postal system, amateur communities of practice, and travel and leisure experiences more generally."


A number of partial bursaries covering 50 per cent of course fees will be awarded on a first come basis. Applicants who wish to be considered for a partial bursary should submit a statement (max. 500 words) to, outlining how Inside Out: The Workings of a Photography Gallery would contribute to their professional development. Successful applicants will be notified within a week of submission. 

We actively encourage applications from groups who are currently underrepresented in the cultural sector in the UK. This includes people who identify as D/deaf, disabled* and neurodivergent; those with caring responsibilities; candidates from Black, Asian and ethnically diverse backgrounds; and arts and culture professionals whose career development has been negatively impacted by Covid-19, prioritising independent artists, freelancers and those made redundant/at risk of redundancy since 2020.

*The Equality Act 2010 defines a disabled person as someone who has a physical or mental impairment, and the impairment has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities. Sharing that you are disabled will not be used in any way in judging the quality of your application.

Details on how to access the talk will be confirmed upon registration. Please check your junk folders if you haven't received an email from TPG confirming your place.


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