About this Project

London boast one of the most diverse populations in the world. The World in London presents portraits of Londoners by British and international photographers taken from 2009 – 2012. Each portrait shows a person or people from one of the 204 nations taking part in the London 2012 Games, accompanied by individual stories.

The World in London is a celebration of Londoners and demonstrates photography’s ability to capture the human form in interesting and distinct ways. The project is organised by The Photographers’ Gallery and forms part of the London 2012 Festival, the finale of the Cultural Olympiad.

The Photographers’ Gallery is the largest public gallery in the UK dedicated to photography. Located in London’s Soho, we present a range of free exhibitions and activities related to photography in all its forms. For more information, visit our website.

A documentary of The World in London is currently on The Space, a free digital, pop-up arts service, developed by Arts Council England in partnership with the BBC. Click here to watch the documentary.

The World in London is generously supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and Arts Council England

About the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

The project is supported by the Gulbenkian Foundation under its Cultural Understanding theme. The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation is a European charitable foundation established in Portugal in 1956 with cultural, educational, social and scientific interests. Its founder, Calouste Sarkis Gulbenkian, was an Armenian born near Istanbul. Multicultural and multilingual, and a noted art collector, he spent his career bringing people from different cultures and nationalities together.

Based in Lisbon with branches in London and Paris, the Foundation is in a privileged position of being able to address national and transnational issues and to act as an ‘exchange’ for ideas. The purpose of the UK Branch, based in London, is to help enrich and connect the experiences of people in the UK and Ireland and secure lasting, beneficial change. One of our core aims is to improve cultural understanding between cultures and through culture.

Cultural  Understanding is one of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s major themes. These evocative portraits of individuals collectively demonstrate the rich variety of cultures that makes London so distinctive as a place where people feel they can be accepted with tolerance.

Andrew Barnett, Director, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, UK


All photographs taken as part of The World in London project are © the artists/photographers.

The Photographers’ Gallery is indebted to all the portrait sitters and photographers who came together to make this project.

The World in London Project Team:

Brett Rogers, Director
Stefanie Braun, Senior Curator
Kate Elliott, The World in London Exhibition Coordinator
Jo Healy, Head of Marketing
Hannah Laycock, Oral Histories Coordinator
Janice McLaren, Head of Education & Projects
Karen McQuaid, Curator
Inbal Mizrahi, Press Manager
Melissa Rose, Project Coordinator & Assistant to Director

With very special thanks to the following project contributors and advisors:

Extended Project Team:

Thiago Jesus, Project Coordinator (2010/11)

Hilary Carty, Focus Group Leader
Verusca Calabria, Oral History Consultant
Vivienne Gaskin, Project Manager (2008/9)
Annabel Jackson, Project Evaluator
Catherine McLelland/Anna Jones, Calum Sutton PR

Oral History Volunteers:

Jenny Barwell
Anna Fairbank
Josef Konczak
Linda Ligios
Kate Mervyn-Jones
Jane Perrott
Kate Rowles
Margaret Ruttle
Lola Vallejo
Katherine Wallis
Emily Whitechurch
Jane Wilson
Sejul Malde

Education Workshops & Publication:

Julie Gibbings & Leila Nicholas (Citizenship Foundation)
Othello de’Souza-Hartley (workshop photographer)
Petra Pattinson, Schools & Projects Organiser, The Photographers’ Gallery

With the participation of staff and pupils at:  St Aloysius Catholic Infant School, Copthall School, Corelli College, Dunraven School, Hendon School, Lauriston Primary School, Southmead Primary School and Torriano Juniors School

Project Advisory Group:

Sian Ede
Laia Gasch
Bali Hothi
Vivien Lovell
Peter Raymond
Simon Roberts
Jane Wentworth
Anne Williams

Other project supporters and contributors:

Kate Bland, Cast Iron Radio and Recording
Camilla Brown
Loveday Shewell
Jo Elliott, Moving Target Films
Clive Egginton
Rupert Grey
Mike Hussey, Almacantar
Amber Kehoe, Sabian LTD
Kevin Lower, Land Securities
Patrick Loy, Emma Kemshell, LiveNation
Andrew Barnett, Felicity Luard, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation
Munira Mirza, Justine Simons and Chenine Bathena, The Mayors Office
Eddie Morgan, BBC/The Space
Museum of London
Alistair Raphael
Naomi Russell
Wendy Stephenson
The World in London Focus Group participants
Pam McCrea, Tower Hamlets
Scott Williams,  A2/SW/HK
Michael Ayerst, Alice Telepneff, Fred Parrish, VGL LTD
Toby Cuthbertson, Roger Austin, Westminster Council
Ian Budden, Marije Matthew, Wai Shun-Ng and James Browne, Mind Unit

ACE London

Moira Sinclair
Leonie Sakey
Jo Baxendale
Sabine Unamun
Ruth MacKenzie
Sarah Weir

And with thanks to the many other people who provided invaluable advice, assistance, contacts and general support to make this project possible.

Disclaimer: Any views or opinions presented on this website are solely those of each individual portrait sitter/photographer and do not necessarily represent those of staff or trustees of The Photographers' Gallery.

Supported by:

Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation       Arts Council England

Project partners:

Locog BT London Live       Tower Hamlets       Mayor Of London       The Space