Photo London 2023 opens this week: here's what you need to know

Votes for Women, by Sarah Maple, is part of the Writing Her Own Script show at Photo London 2023
Votes for Women, by Sarah Maple, is part of the Writing Her Own Script show at Photo London 2023, featuring the work of women photographers from the Hyman Collection (Image credit: Sarah Maple/Photo London 2023)

Photo London is one of the world's biggest photography fairs, bringing together the world's leading galleries to show and sell work by photographers. Relaunched in 2015, Photo London is now in its eight year, and has become a firm fixture on the fine art and professional photography calendar. 

This week the event returns to Somerset House in London's West End on 11-14 May. And it's an amazing place to keep your pulse on what's happening in the industry, network and find inspiration. Here you'll find galleries, exhibitors, book publishers, and a public programme of talks and tours. 

Get tickets to Photo London here

Can't get to London? No worries. The fourth edition of Photo London Digital will run from 10-29 May. Launched in 2020 during the pandemic, this virtual festival has now evolved into a year-round event, incorporating online panel discussions and workshops for people who aren't able to attend in person. 

What's on at Photo London 2023

Led by the Master of Photography exhibition 'Martin Parr. Recent Works’, this year’s fair also includes the group shows ‘Writing her own Script. Women Photographers from the Hyman Collection’ and ‘Fotografía Maroma’, awards for young photographers, a talks programme curated by Aperture, and plenty more. Here are the highlights of Photo London 2023 we're most looking forward to...

Llandudno, Wales, 2013 - one of Martin Parr's series of beach images which will be in show (Image credit: © Martin Parr / Magnum Photos / Rocket Gallery)
  • This year’s Master of Photography, Martin Parr presents an exhibition of recent work including the installation Beach Therapy.
  • Writing her own Script: Woman Photographers from the Hyman Collection is a group show celebrating many of the pioneering women photographers at work in the UK over the past 100 years.
  • Fotografía Maroma is an exhibition of contemporary Mexican photography co-curated by Fariba Farshad and Patricia Conde and presented by Belmond.

Multiple images of the moon appearing on a sheet tied to poles on a beach in front of the sea

Trapping the Moon (2022) by Patricia Lagarde is part of the Fotografía Marom exhibition  (Image credit: Patricia Lagarde)
  • Prints by recently deceased legends including Fan Ho (1931–2016), Susan Hiller (1940–2019), Peter Lindbergh (1944–2019), Chris Killip (1946–2020) and Jürgen Schadeberg (1931–2020).
  • Works by living luminaries Sonia Boyce, Edward Burtynsky, Thomas Demand, Ori Gersht, Nan Goldin, Sarah Moon, Sebastião Salgado, Alec Soth and Thomas Struth.
  • The Discovery Section showcasing the freshest photographers and galleries, including works incorporating AI technology.

Four people dressed in primary colours with longhaired wigs covering their faces

Costumes and Pranks to Amuse his Parents, by Fion Hung Ching-Yan is part of this year's Hahnemühle Shortlist (Image credit: Fion Hung Ching-Yan)

  • The Photo London x Nikon Emerging Photographer Award, with the winner announced Wednesday 10 May at 6.30pm, and a display of last year’s winner Max Miechowski and his fellow shortlisted photographers in the Nikon Gallery.
  • The inaugural Photo London x Hahnemühle Student Award, with shortlisted photographers on view and the winner announced on Saturday 13 May.
  • Aperture leads the 2023 Talks Programme alongside Nikon and FT Weekend, offering conversations with Lynsey Addario, Heather Agyepong, Alia Ali, Babak Kazemi, Joy Gregory and Martin Parr.
  • Workshops run by Nikon on dance photography and British fashion.
  • I MATTER, an outdoor photographic exhibition presented by the non-profit organisation CASE Art Fund to raise awareness about children's human rights.

Exhibitors at Photo London 2023

With 125 exhibitors at the fair this year – a big jump from the 106 who took part last year – there's plenty for fans of photography to enjoy. Here are some highlights we're especially excited about.

Kazakh Bride, 2019 by Ma Hailun.  (Image credit: Ma Hailun)
  • At Galerie Sophie Scheidecker, a group show on surrealism includes works by Man Ray, “L´Origine des Espèces” (1935) and Manuel Alvarez Bravo, “Instrumental” (1931) alongside contemporary artists such as Nan Goldin.
  • Grob Gallery is showing rare prints by Édouard Boubat, Willy Ronis and William Klein — whose works are on sale at Photo London for the first time since he passed away last year — alongside pieces by Brassai, Cartier-Bresson, Sougez, Brancusi, Pierre Boucher and Bill Brandt.
  • In celebration of King Charles III’s coronation, two of the earliest works at the Fair are William Henry Fox Talbot’s “St. Georges Chapel, Windsor'' and by Nicholas Henneman’s “Westminster Abbey” — both made c.1844.
  • Contemporary everyday life is the subject of Magnum’s booth curated by Gregory Halpern, Alec Soth and Lindokuhle Sobekwa. The exhibit features Soth’s gently surreal portraits of middle America and Bogotá in conversation with Halpern's Rust Belt mysticism, Sobekwa's images of Johannesburg, alongside photos by Martin Parr and Chris Killip.

Young Kids (2022) by Sam Wright is part of this year's Nikon Shortlist (Image credit: Sam Wright)

  • Shtager Gallery will present a study of glossy photography from Gunter Sachs (1932-2011), who shot the first nude photo for French Vogue in 1976.
  • This year’s Fair includes several galleries supporting photographers from Iran. LS10 Gallery presents a focus on Iranian contemporary photography, while O Gallery based in Tehran is presenting works by the contemporary photographer Mohammedreza Mirzaei alongside rare prints by Kaveh Kazemi, including photographs of the 1979 revolution and its aftermath.
  • The relationship between photography and truth is interrogated by a number of photographers including Thomas Demand, whose illusionistic photographs of 3D models sculpted entirely from paper are on show at Galleri K.
  • Contemporary artists whose work engages with AI include Ori Gersht, on show at Michel Hoppen, Maisie Cousins at TJ Boulting and the young, Nikon-shortlisted photographer Evelyn Bencicova at Artemis.

Get tickets to Photo London 2023

Photo London takes place on May 11-14 at Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1LA. Opening hours are 1pm to 8pm and there's no re-entry.

A Standard Day Ticket is £32 and a Concession Ticket (Disabled, Student, Youth 13-17) is £22. A Weekend Pass is available for £52. 

You can buy tickets over the phone via 0333 320 2836. Lines are open between 9am-8pm Mon-Fri, 10am-8pm Sat, 10am-6pm Sun and Bank Holidays. For group bookings of more than 10 tickets, please contact Somerset House at For full ticket details, visit the website

See also
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Tom May

Tom May is a freelance writer and editor specializing in art, photography, design and travel. He has been editor of Professional Photography magazine, associate editor at Creative Bloq, and deputy editor at net magazine. He has also worked for a wide range of mainstream titles including The Sun, Radio Times, NME, T3, Heat, Company and Bella.