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From its experimental origins to the rise of digital technologies, photography has acquired a central role within the art world. This has resulted in an ever-increasing number of dedicated festivals, exhibitions, collections and prizes. The medium also commands a strong position with the art market, appearing in specialist art fairs and auctions and major contemporary art sales. Consequently, debates on photography cover a wide variety of topics, from the emergence of the modernist tradition to the forms of visual communication produced by platforms such as Instagram.

This course will examine photography’s changing status as an art form from the early twentieth century to the present day; tracing its movement to the centre of the art world and the global art market. It will explore the major artists, exhibitions and movements which secured photography’s current position and assess the medium’s future. The course also includes sessions on various aspects of the market, including prints and editioning, valuing photographs and the legal issues that surround art photography.

Students will learn from the expertise of our in-house specialists and a diverse programme of guest speakers, including leading market experts, artists and curators. The course adopts a wide variety of teaching formats, from lectures and group discussions to class visits to public, private and commercial collections and exhibitions. It also includes a historical techniques workshop in which we will make our own tin-types. On completion of Photography, History and the Market, students will be able to analyse and discuss art photography and its position within the art world.

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The Details
  • Course Dates

    Course Dates

    The Institute is currently developing the course schedule for Summer Study London 2019. Complete details and registration will be available in late fall 2018. Please contact for more information. If you can’t wait until Summer 2019 check out our Semester or Online offers.
  • Faculty
  • Sample Topics

    Sample Topics

    • The formation of canons of art photography

    • Early collections: archives and museums

    • The history of the art market for photography

    • The contemporary art market and the future

    • Processes and preservation

    • Photography at Sotheby’s

    • American and European Modernism

    • Photography and conceptual art

    • Postmodernism and appropriation

    • The Dusseldorf School

    • Landscape photography

    • Portraiture and identity

    • Fashion photography

    • Curating the photograph

    • Photography and globalization

    • Photography and digital culture

    • Mobile photography workshop

    • The Photobook

  • Study Visits

    Study Visits

    London is a centre for photographic activity of all sorts. The course will include faculty-led visits to a range of integral spaces and collections, such as:

    • National Portrait Gallery

    • The Photographers’ Gallery

    • Tate Britain

    • Tate Modern

    • Victoria & Albert Museum Prints and Drawings Study Room

    • East End Galleries

    • West End Galleries

    • Private and Corporate Collections

    • Artists’ Studios

  • Course Fees And Registration

    Course Fees And Registration


    Click here to register now and pay online.

    Click here to read Terms and Conditions.
  • FAQ


    Click here to read Summer Study London FAQ.
  • Contact And Request Information

    Contact And Request Information

    For further information, please contact: or Request Information
    Tel: +44 (0)20 7462 3251

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