Staff Directory

Paul Reas known as Paul Reas. Course Leader Documentary Photography

Paul reas

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B.A Hons Photography.


Paul Reas is one of the most significant photographers to emerge from the new wave of British colour documentary of the mid-1980s. He is part of a pioneering generation of photographers, that included Paul Graham, Martin Parr and Anna Fox, who revealed and critiqued British class and culture. Reas has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally and his work is held in private and public collections. In addition he has a significant commercial practice that has seen him working for editorial clients such as the Sunday Times Magazine, The Telegraph Magazine, The Observer Magazine etc. He has also created a number of award winning advertising campaigns for clients such as V.W, Sony Playstation, Honda, Transport for London and more. In 2014 a major retrospective exhibition of his work opened at Impressions Gallery Bradford before touring nationally. 2014/15 will also see the publication of Reas’ third book, a survey of his 30 year practice, to be published by Gost Books.


Over the last thirty years Reas has had a deliberately diverse photographic practice. His work has been published in a variety of sources, from the mainstream international magazines such as the Sunday Times to the artist book. His work has been exhibited internationally at numerous international venues and festivals including Photomonth, Krakow in Poland; Rencontres d’Arles, France; Foto International, Rotterdam; Jeu de Paume, Paris; and The Photographers’ Gallery, London. His work has featured in many major survey exhibitions of photography, including How We Are: Photographing Britain at Tate Britain, London (2007) and Who’s Looking at the Family at Barbican (1994). His photographic series I Can Help and Flogging A Dead Horse were both published as monographs by Cornerhouse, and his editorial and commercial work has garnered awards including the Cannes Lion (Gold and Bronze) and D&AD Award (Gold). His work is held in a number of public and private collections and is represented by James Hyman Gallery in London.


I Can Help. Manchester: Cornerhouse, 1988. ISBN 0-948797-06-1. With a foreword by Rod Jones and a text (“Hey big spender”) by Stuart Cosgrove.
Flogging a Dead Horse: Heritage Culture and Its Role in Post-industrial Britain. Manchester: Cornerhouse, 1993. ISBN 0-948797-52-5. With text by Stuart Cosgrove and an afterword by Val Williams.
Pivot: Sixteen Artists Using Photography in Wales and Philadelphia. Llandudno, Wales: Oriel Mostyn, 1991. ISBN 9780906860168. By Chris Colclough. Catalogue of an exhibition held in Wales and Philadelphia, 15 June – 14 September 1991. Photographs by S Packer, Helen Sear, Paul Reas, Alistair Crawford, C. Colclough, Peter Finnemore, Suzanne Greenslade, Keith Arnatt and others. Texts by Paula Marincola and Susan Beardmore in English and Welsh.
Positive Lives: Responses to HIV. London: Network Photographers; Cassell, 1993. ISBN 0-304-32846-4. Part of the Cassell AIDS Awareness Series. Edited by Stephen Mayes and Lyndall Stein. Reas contributes photographs for a chapter, “Rupert – A Life Story”. Also includes photographic essays from Denis Doran, John Sturrock, Michael Abrahams, Mike Goldwater, Judah Passow, Mark Power, Jenny Matthews, Barry Lewis and Christopher Pillitz, Steve Pyke, Paul Lowe and Gideon Mendel. Foreword by Edmund White. Introduction by Stephen Mayes. Each chapter also includes a written essay.
British Photography,Towards A Bigger Picture.1988 Aperture. ISBN 0-89381341-9
Who’s Looking at the Family? London: Barbican Art Gallery, 1994. Edited by Val Williams, Carol Brown and Brigitte Lardinois. ISBN 0946372322. Accompanying an exhibition.
Documentary Dilemmas: Aspects of British Documentary Photography, 1983–1993. London: British Council, 1994. ISBN 0-86355-232-3. Catalogue of the exhibition, edited by Brett Rogers.
The House in the Middle; Photographs of Interior Design in the Nuclear Age. Brighton: Photoworks, 2004, ISBN 9781903796146. Accompanied an exhibition; also with work by Anne Hardy, Danny Treacy, Dirk Wackerfuss, Jo Broughton, John Kippin, Richard Billingham, and others.
How We Are. Photographing Britain.Tate Publication.2007.ISBN10-1854377140
From Talbot to Fox. 150 Years of British Social Photography. London: James Hyman, 2012. Edition of 50. An overview of British social photography published to accompany an exhibition by James Hyman Photography at The AIPAD Photography Show New York in 2011. Includes photographs by William Henry Fox Talbot, David Octavius Hill & Robert Adamson, Roger Fenton, Horatio Ross, Julia Margaret Cameron, Thomas Annan, Bill Brandt, Bert Hardy, Roger Mayne, Cecil Beaton, Caroline Coon, Paul Reas, Jem Southam, Ken Grant, Karen Knorr, Anna Fox and others.
The Photographer’s Playbook, 307 Assignments and ideas. 2014 Aperture. ISBN978-1-59711-247-5


Solo exhibitions
1988: I Can Help. Photographers’ Gallery, London; Olympus Gallery, Amsterdam.1415 Stills Gallery, Edinburgh.
1988: Fotobienal, Vigo.
1993: Flogging a Dead Horse: Paul Reas. Photographers’ Gallery, London; Cornerhouse, Manchester; and tour.[
2012: From a Distance. The Gallery, London College of Communication, 12–25 October 2012. Photographs of the Elephant and Castle, made as part of the project The Elephant Vanishes.
2013/2014: “Day Dreaming about the Good Times?”, December 2013–March 2014, Impressions Gallery, Bradford.19 March–May 2014, Ffotogallery, Penarth, Wales. A retrospective of his personal, editorial and advertising work.

Joint exhibitions
1985: Image and Exploration: Some Directions in British Photography 1980–85. Photographers’ Gallery, London. With Chris Belcher, Chris Colclough, Berris Conolly, Mary Cooper, Peter Gale, Damian Gillie, Helen Harris, Paul Highnam, Sarah Morley, Paul Reas, Christopher Taylor and Mark Warne.
1985: The Globe: Representing the World. Photographers’ Gallery, London. With E. Christo, Dwina Fitzpatrick, Brian Griffin, Peter Kennard, Paul Reas, Rodchenko, Sebastião Salgado, Susan Trangmar and Boyd Webb.
1987–1988: Young European Photographers. Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt;14 Galerie Faber, Vienna.
1988: Critical Realism. Camden Arts Centre, London.
1988: The New Generation. Fotobienal, Vigo, Spain.
1989: Condemned to Making Sense. Perspektief Gallery, Rotterdam.
1989: Through the Looking Glass. Barbican Art Gallery, London.
1989: Image and Exploration. The Photographers’ Gallery, London.
1989: Valleys Project. Galerie im Lichthof, Stuttgart.
1990: Fotobienale, Enschede, Netherlands.
1990: Vigovisións. Fotobienal, Vigo, Spain.
1990: Heritage Image and History. Cornerhouse, Manchester.
1991: Pivot: Sixteen Artists Using Photography in Wales and Philadelphia, Oriel Mostyn, Llandudno, UK.
1992: Rencontres d’Arles, Arles, France.
1992: ICI Awards, National Portrait Gallery, London, and tour.
1993: A Positive View. Saatchi Gallery, London.
1993: Positive Lives: Responses to HIV. Photographers’ Gallery, London, and tour. With Mike Abrahams, Denis Doran, Mike Goldwater, Fergus Greer, Mark Fower, Barry Lewis, Paul Lowe, Jenny Matthews, Gideon Mendel, Judah Passow, Chris Pillitz, Mark Power, Steve Pyke, Paul Reas and John Sturrock.
1993–1996: Documentary Dilemmas. British Council. 80 works by 13 artists selected by Brett Rogers. Included work by John Davies, Anna Fox, Julian Germain, Paul Graham, Tommy Harris, Anthony Haughey, Chris Killip, John Kippin, Karen Knorr, Martin Parr, Paul Reas, Paul Seawright and Jem Southam. Toured internationally.
1994: Who’s Looking at the Family? Barbican Art Gallery, London.22 Reas exhibited Portrait of an Invisible Man.
1995: Foto International. Foto Institute, Rotterdam.
1998: Rencontres d’Arles. Arles, France.
2001: Memorias da Cidade. Braga, Portugal.
2004: Hirschl Gallery. London.
2004: A Gentle Madness. National Museum of Photography, Film and Television, Bradford.
2004: The House in the Middle. Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne.
2006: From Brighton, Diaphane Editions, Montreuil sur Brèche, France. Work from photographers living in Brighton: Jim Cooke, Nigel Green, Marcus Haydock, Stephen Hughes, Magali Nougarède and Paul Reas.
2006: Memórias da cidade, Encontros da Imagem. D. Diogo de Sousa Museum, Braga, Portugal. Exhibition by 30 artists.
2007: How We Are: Photographing Britain. Tate Britain. Included contributions from numerous photographers.
2008/2009: ParrWorld, touring exhibition, Haus der Kunst, Munich, 2008; Breda Design Museum, The Netherlands, 2008; Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris, 2009; Baltic, Gateshead, UK, 2009.
2010: Nothing is in the place. Photographs of the 1990s by AVI, Anonymous (Value Action), Donald Christie, Vicki Churchill, Brett Dee, Nigel Dickinson, Chris Dyer, Jason Evans, Anna Fox, Ken Grant, Nick Knight, Mark Lally, Clive Landen, Gordon MacDonald, Martin Parr, Vinca Petersen, Mark Power, Paul Reas, Richard Sawdon-Smith, Helen Sear, Paul Seawright, Nigel Shafran, Wolfgang Tillmans, Nick Waplington, Jack Webb, Tom Wood, and Dan Wootton; curated by Jason Evans. Gallery of Contemporary Art Bunkier Sztuki, Photomonth in Kraków, 2010. Fringe Focus. The Old Co-Op Building, Brighton.
2013: Da Memória, part of Memórias da cidade, Festival da Criatividade GNRation ON, Braga, Portugal. Exhibition by Antoine D’Agata, Céu Guarda, Frédéric Bellay, Jim Dow, Luc Choquer, Luísa Ferreira, Luís Palma, Mariana Viegas, Martin Parr, Paul Reas, Paulo Catrica, and Vari Caramés.


External Examiner in Photography at the Royal Academy of Art in the Hague, Holland.


@docphotNewport and @paulreas

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