Making Space Exhibition

Photographs of Architecture - National Galleries

Architecture is a record of human life past, present, and future – we are all intrinsically linked to it. Making Space explored how architecture impacts people’s lives. A poor built environment exacerbates inequality, but architecture has the power to address social issues including homelessness, poverty, and displacement. It considers how the built environment has a significant role to play in creating a more sustainable future. 

Architecture has also been an enduring theme in the story of photography. Visually engaging and physically static, buildings were the perfect subjects for early photographic experiments. In around 1826, French inventor Joseph Nicéphore Niépce made the first known photographic image – it was of the rooftops visible from his studio.


 Inspired by this and the wealth of incredible material in the national photography collection this exhibition celebrated the connection between people and the spaces they exist in. 

This free exhibition spanned the breadth of the history of photography. It highlighted a diverse range of photographic styles, formats and processes dating from the 1840s to the present day. It enabled visitors to follow the line from Hill & Adamson’s early experiments on Edinburgh’s Calton Hill through to spectacular contemporary photographs by Andreas Gursky and Chris Leslie which capture the breath-taking scale of modern buildings.