Richard Sawdon Smith is an internationally exhibiting and award-winning British photographer. He is Professor of Photography and Dean of Media at Norwich University of the Arts. He is a former winner of the John Kobal/NPG Photographic Portrait Award (1997), a Board Member of the bookRoom Press, on the Editorial Advisory Panel of the Journal of Photography & Culture  and Co-editor of Langford’s Basic Photography and The Book is Alive!. His photographs and writing are widely published.


Selected Exhibitions

International – group exhibition unless stated otherwise

2014 Espal Tactel, ‘Guest List’, Valencia Spain

2014 Impossible Gallery, ‘Guest List’, Barcelona Spain

2014 Artist Corner Gallery, Round Hole, Square Peg: Art With A Manifesto’, Hollywood, USA

2014 PhotoLA ‘Round Hole, Square Peg: Art With A Manifesto’, Los Angeles, USA

2013 MACT/CACT Museo d’arte Contemporanea Ticino ‘The Solitary Body: Self-portraiture in Contemporary Photography’ Ticino, Switzerland

2013 Smart Cloths Gallery ‘Round Hole, Square Peg: Queer Identity in the 21st Century’, New York, USA

2012 Rise Berlin (sole show) ‘The Anatomical Man’ 9th – 31st August, Berlin Germany

2010 International Museum of Surgical Science, ‘Street Anatomy’ Chicago, USA

2010 Gallery of Contemporary Art Bunkier Sztuki, ‘Nothing is in Place’ Photomonth Krakow, Poland

2010 Rise Berlin ‘Happiness Machines’, Berlin, Germany 26th March – 25th April

2008 Camp Rehoboth ‘Keep the Promise’, Delaware Beech, USA

2008 Comisión Nacional de Derechos HumanosListening to Myself’, (solo show) Aids in Culture Conference, Mexico City, Mexico

2008 Cobra Museum of Modern Art, ‘Just Different’, Amsterdam, Netherlands

2008 Student Cultural Centre (solo show) ‘Art Pos(t)er / AIDS Pos(t)er’, Belgrade, Serbia

2008 Student Cultural Centre ‘April Meetings Belgrade, Serbia

2008 Centro Historia Zaragossa, ‘El cuerpo (con) sentido’, Spain

2007 Student Cultural Centre ‘In Difference’ Belgrade, Serbia

2007 Rise Berlin ‘Leben Lieben’, Berlin, Germany

2006 Camp Rehoboth, ‘Keep the Promise’, Delaware Beech, USA

2006 The Theatre Centre, ‘In Tents City’, Toronto, Canada

2006 MOCCA Courtyard The XVI International AIDS Conference, ‘In Tents City’, Toronto, Canada

2005 Visual AIDS Web Gallery, “The Damaged Narcissist’ curated by self,

2005 Orange County Contemporary Arts Gallery, ‘Unfinished Work’, California, USA

2005 Propeller Centre for the Visual Arts, “Refuse to Die”, Toronto, Canada

2005 CDC Public Health Museum, Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Atlanta, GA, USA

2004 Galerie Baudoin Lebon, ‘One Vision’ France

2004 Kiasma, Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinski, ‘One Vision’ Finland

2004 Museum Kina of Gent, ‘One Vision’ Belguim

2004 The XV International AIDS Conference, ‘Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Bangkok, Thailand

2004 Palais de Tokyo, ‘OneVision’ Paris France

2003 Bombay, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, India

2003 The Philadelphia Art Alliance, Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, PA, USA

2003 Brown University, Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Providence, RI, USA

2003 Pelham Arts Centre,Photo I-D: 21st Centaury Self-Portraits’, NY NY

2003 The Tretyakov Gallery, Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Moscow, Russia

2002 United Nations,Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, NY, USA

2002 Pretoria Art Museum, ‘Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Pretoria, South Africa

2002 MACBA The XIV International AIDS Conference, ‘Pandemic: Imaging AIDS’, Barcelona, Spain

2001 Pamukbank Fotografgalerisi, ‘Isik Acik!’ (Into the Light), Istanbul, Turkey

2000 La Sala Municipal de Exposiciones del Teatro Calderón, ‘A Plena Luz’(Into the Light), Valladolid, Spain

1999 La Calcografia Nacional, ‘A Plena Luz’ (Into the Light), Madrid, Spain

1998 Belem Cultural Centre, Expo’98 ‘A Stroll Through the Century’, Lisbon, Portugal

1992 Galerie Godante, (solo show), Kobe, Japan

1992 The Deep Gallery, (solo show), Tokyo, Japan,

1991 Salon International de la Recherche Photographique (S.I.R.P.), Royan, France


UK Group – group exhibition unless stated otherwise

2015 The Gallery at NUA ‘Hidden in Plain Sight’ 27th Jan – 28th Feb

2014 Bank Gallery, London Metropolitan University ‘Uncertain States / 2014’ London, 17th Nov – 5th Dec

2014 Four Corners ‘Uncertain States Editions’ London May/June

2013 Bank Gallery, London Metropolitan University ‘Uncertain States / 2013’ London, 8th – 30th Nov

2012 Whitechapel Art Gallery ‘London Art Book Fair’ 20th – 23rd Sept

2012 Beers Lambert Project Space ‘Transgression’ 2nd June – July 3rd

2012 Royal Academy of Arts ‘Summer Exhibition’ 4th June – 12th August

2011 Fred International Ltd ‘Queer Self Portraits Now’  24th Nov 2011 – 29th Jan 2012

2010 Brighton Photography Biannual Fringe the Old Co-op Building ‘Nothing is in Place’ 1st Oct – 14th Nov

2009 Hidden, London ‘Act Art Annual Performance Festival 07’ 2009

2009 Permanent Gallery ‘itchy scratchy picture show’ Brighton, 2nd Oct – 8th Nov 2009

2009 Whitechapel Art Gallery ‘London Art Book Fair’ Sept 2009

2008 XXL, London ‘Act Art Annual Performance Festival 06’

2007 XXL, London ‘Act Art Annual Performance Festival 05’ 2007

2007 London West Gallery ‘Interruptions in Time’, London 2007

2007 Drill Hall AIDS the Dark Muse: The impact of AIDS on gay culture 28/10/07, London UK

2007 Subscription Rooms PhotoStroud Festival of Photography ‘31 Studio’ Stroud, UK Oct.

2005 Central Station, London ‘Act Art Annual Performance Festival 03’ Nov

2004 BA Festival of Science, Exeter, ‘Self-ish’ Sept.

2004 UKC ‘Changing Tomorrow’ Conference, University of Leicester, ‘One Vision’ Sept.

2004 Portcullis House, House of Commons, London, ‘One Vision’ July

2004 Plymouth Art Centre, Plymouth, ‘Exposed: 31 Studio 1988 – 2004’ April – May

2004 Scicult Gallery, London ‘Self-ish’ March – April

2004 Ormeau Baths, Belfast ‘Self-Portrait UK’ Feb. – March

2004 Manchester Art Gallery, ‘Self-Portrait UK’ Nov. – Jan.

2003 Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow ‘Self-Portrait UK’ Sept. – Nov.

2003 National Museum & Galleries of Wales, ‘Self-Portrait UK’ Cardiff

2003 National Portrait Gallery, ‘Self-Portrait UK’, London

2003 James Hockey Gallery, Surrey ‘Connections’

2002 Elms Lester Painting Rooms, London ‘History of Lesbian and Gay Clubbing Since WWII

2002 National Portrait Gallery, London ‘John Kobal Award 10th Anniversary’

2001 The Photographers’ Gallery, London ‘Channel 4 YR.1’, 2001 & Open Eye, Liverpool 2001 & Stills Gallery, Edinburgh.

2001 291 Gallery, London ‘Besides, it is Always Others Who Die: Post Viral’,

2000 Hereford Photography Festival, (solo show) City Art Gallery, Hereford

2000 E1 Gallery, ‘Camera Chimera: Killer Shots Part 2 retrospective’,

2000 ICA, London, ‘Camera Chimera: Killer Shots Part 1 contemporary’,

2000 Anne Faggionato Gallery, London ‘Psycho: Art & Anatomy’

2000 Atrium Gallery, London ‘Invisible Body’

1999-2000 Royal Photographic Society, Bath  ‘Into the Light’1999 & Newlyn Art Gallery, Cornwall 2000 & The Metropole Arts Centre, Folkestone

1998 Leeds Metropolitan University Gallery / Photo ‘98, ‘The Ugly Show’ (Vile Bodies)1998 & Southill Park, Bracknell

1998 Maidstone Museum and Art Gallery, ‘Evidence’

1997 Kudos, (solo show) London.

1997-1998 National Portrait Gallery, London ‘John Kobal Photographic Portrait Award’ 1997 & The Royal Photographic Society, Bath 1998, The Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh 1998, Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham 1998 and Cartwright Hall, Bradford 1998.

1996 The Box, (solo show) London.

1996 Atrium Gallery, London ‘Young Contemporary Photographers’

1994 John Jones Gallery ‘Revelations: International Collection of the Nude’

1993 ICA, London ‘Art For Equality’

1993-1994 The Edge, London, Birmingham, Glasgow, ‘Sex Crimes’

1992 Norwich Arts Centre, ‘Female Nude’ 1991, ‘Male Nude’

1990 Expectations, (solo show) London.

1990 Museum of Modern Art Oxford ‘Lies, Lies, Lies’ 1989, ‘Boundaries’

1989 First Out, (solo show) London.

1989-1992 Portfolio Gallery, London various

1989 Special Photographers Company, London

1988-89 Black & Whites Gallery, London various

1989 Submarine Gallery, London ‘Religion’ 1988, ‘Masked Passion’

1988 Submarine Gallery, (solo show) London.

1987 The Angel, (solo show) London.


Authored Essays and Edited books:

2014 R Sawdon Smith ‘On Mourning: Roland Barthes Widowed Mother – in response to The Mourners by Georgia Metaxas’ in Uncertain states Magazine issue 19

2013 R Sawdon Smith   ‘Listening to myself: AIDS and the Politics of Representation – a personal perspective’ in HIV in World Cultures edited by Gus Subero (Farnham: Ashgate)

2013 R Sawdon Smith and Emmanuelle Waeckerle (ed) The Book is  ALive! (Manchester: Cornorhouse)

2013 R Sawdon Smith  ‘Tattoo Virus: AIDS Representation on the Skin’ in NYX a Noctournal (Goldsmiths University)

2013 R Sawdon Smith  ‘Queering the New Normal’ in Uncertain States Magazine

2012 R Sawdon Smith ‘Richard Sawdon Smith’ in Out There Magazine (London: Brown Tiger Ltd)

2010 R Sawdon Smith and Anna Fox (ed) Langford’s Basic Photography 9th Edition (Oxford, Focal Press)

2007 R Sawdon Smith and Anna Fox (ed)  Langford’s Basic Photography 8th Edition (Oxford, Focal Press)

2004 R Sawdon Smith ‘Exiles of Normality: Photography and the Representation of Diseased Bodies’ in P Wagstaff (ed) Cultures of Exile: Images of Displacement (New York: Berghahn)  


2015 R Sawdon Smith and Anna Fox (ed) Langford’s Basic Photography 10th Edition (Oxford, Focal Press)


Works in Books

2014 Paco y Manolo. (ed) Guest List (Barcelona)

2013 Paul Schulz, Christian Lütjens. (ed) Positive Picture: A Gay History (Germany, Bruno Gmünder)

2012 N Caruana, A Fox.  Basic Creative Photography 03: Behind the Image: Research in Photography (Switzerland, AVA)

2010 K Norman Ellis. (ed) Spaces Between Us: Poetry, Prose and Art on HIV/AIDS (Chicago, TWP)

2004 E Cooper.   Male Bodies: A Photographic History of the Nude (Germany:Prestel)

2003 N Richardson.      Pandemic: Facing AIDS (NY: Umbrage)

2003 D Campany.        Art and Photography (London: Phaidon)

2000 G Griffin.             Representation of HIV and AIDS: Visibility Blue/s  (Manchester: Manchester University Press)

1999 M Olley (ed).       Homme: Masterpieces of Male Photography, (London: Carlton Books) (Published under the title of Adonis in USA)

1998 C Townsend.       Vile Bodies: Photography and the Crisis of Looking, (Prestel: Germany)

1995 E Cooper.            Fully Exposed: A History of the Male Nude in Photography, Revised Edition (Routledge: London)

1990 E Cooper.            Fully Exposed: A History of the Male Nude in Photography, (Routledge: London)


Citations in books

2004 M Keiran             Revealing Art: Why Art Matters (Routledge)

2003 S Brown              Crime and Law in Media Culture (OUP)


Modelling for Photographers (part of the anatomical man series)

2011 Alex MacNaughton London Tattoos (London/New York, Prestel)


Works in Exhibition Catalogues

2014 Uncertain States / 2014, UK

2014 Round Hole, Square Peg: Art With A Manifesto, Artist Corner Gallery USA

2013 Uncertain States / 2013, UK

2012 El elogio de la locura. Cuando los compromisos devienen en imagenes by Juan-Ramón Barbancho

2011 Transgression, Beers Lambert Contemporary Art

2008 Just Different, The Cobra Museum of Modern Art Amstelveen, Netherlands

2007 31 Studio: Platinum Prints 1988 – 2007, Photostroud Festival of Photography

2005 Unfinished Works, Orange County Centre for Art, USA

2004 Exposed: 31 Studio 1988 – 2004

2002 John Kobal Photographic Portrait Award / NPG

2001 Post Viral: Besides, it is always others who die

2000 Exposure: Hereford Photography Festival

1999 Into the Light: Photographic printing out of the Darkroom, RPS

1997 John Kobal Photographic Portrait Award / NPG


Works in Magazines

Square Peg, Issue 10 (cover), 18

The Buzz, Issue 1

British Journal of Photography, 27/7/88, 31/8/88, 8/10/97, 15/10/97, 06/12/00

Body Art, August 1989

New Statesman, 20/10/89

BOYZ, 24/9/94 (cover)

Phase, Issue 1

Scenario: The Art Photography Magazine, Issue 1

The Face, Vol. 2, 80

Interiors, June 1995

The CommonDenominator, Issue 2

The London Evening Standard, 5/96, 26/9/97

Fortean Times, November 1996 (cover)

Attitude Interactive June/July 1997

The Times, 27/9/97, 27/6/98

The Guardian, 27/9/97, 27/6/98, 17/10/98

Amateur Photographer, 15/10/97, 22/10/97

The Independent, 07/07/98

Artscene, July 1998

Art Review, February 1998

The Photographic Journal Nov/Dec 1997, Jan/Feb 1998

Time Out, No. 1417  1997, 1439 1998, 17/01/01, No.1706 2003

Flux: Northern Contemporary Art, June 1998

Camera Austria, December 1998

Blue, Australia, June 1999

Body & Society, Vol.5(4): 85-89, 1999

BBC online/londonlive/entertainment/exhibitions, June/July 2000

The Pelham Weekly USA, 07/03/03

Positive Nation, May 2004, issue 101, Sept. 2004, issue 104

New York Art magazine, January 2006

Zero magazine Spain December 2006, 2007

Kink issue 6 Spain Nov 2007

HIVPlus magazine Dec 2008

They Shoot Homos Don’t They issue 5 Australia July 2008

Things & Ink Feb 2015

CNN.com August 2011 http://edition.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/08/10/hiv.tattoos/index.html

Streetanatomy.com August 2011 http://streetanatomy.com/2011/08/25/blood-testing-made-simple/

Self Publish Be Happy December 2010 http://selfpublishbehappy.com/?s=sawdon+smith

Streetanatomy.com December 2010 http://streetanatomy.com/2010/12/02/making-the-internal-external/

Out There Magazine Issue 4 Sept. 2012

plus City Limits, Skin Two, Thud, Forum, Gay Times, Cupido (Norway), Certainty, HIM, The Pink Paper, Positive Times, Hereford Journal, Dazed & Confused


Conference Organisation

Book Live! International Symposium, 8th – 9th June 2012 LSBU, Speakers included Joan Foncuberta (SP), Sharon Gallagher (US), Michael Mack (UK), Sharon Kivland (UK).

Conference papers:

“From the Damaged Narcissist to the Anatomical Man” invited guest speaker at Uncertain States photography magazine monthly talks, London 1st April 2014

 “Queering the New Normal: The Future is Gay” invited speaker at Photography and Queerness Study Day Swedenborg Society London 21st May 2013

 “The Anatomical Man: Tattoos, AIDS and Photography” invited speaker at University College London, Art History Department Seminar 2 April 2012

 “The Anatomical Man: Tattoos, AIDS and Photography” Association of Art Historians Annual Conference, Open University 29-31 March 2012

 “The Anatomical Man: Drawing the line on the Aids body” Keynote speaker at Covering & Exposing symposium, UCA Epsom 23rd June 2011

“Drawing the Line on the AIDS Body”, Drawing the Line Against AIDS conference, University of Adelaide, Australia 4-5 February 2010 

“Listening to Myself: Imagining the AIDS Body Through Photography”, AIDS in Culture V: Imaging and Imagining AIDS conference, Mexico City 5th – 13th December 2008

“In the Archive: Out of the Closet”, presented at the AIDS/ART/WORK conference, CUNY Graduate School, NY, May 30th 2008

“Exiles of Normality: Photography and Representations of Diseased Bodies”, presented at the International Colloquium ‘Exils/Exiles’ conference, Herstmonceux Castle Sussex, May 31st – June 3rd 2001.

“Get me OUT of the Archive: AIDS, Photography and the ‘Abnormal’ Body”, presented at the University of Massachusetts ‘Borderlands: Remapping Zones of Cultural Practice and Representation’ conference, March 30th – 31st 2001.

“A Naked Man Suffering From Water Retention In His Testicles”: Photography and the Representation of Disease, presented to the British Sociological Association, London ‘Gender Aesthetics and the Body’ conference, November 18th 2000.