Paola Leonardi

Paola Leonardi is Course Leader for Fashion Photography – BA (Hons)

Photograph of house in landscape from Undrawn Hours by Paola Leonardi

Paula Leonardi

Paola Leonardi (born Italy 1980) is a London based photographer and a Senior Lecturer at London Metropolitan University.
Since completing the MA Image and Communication at Goldsmiths College in 2006, Paola has worked both commercially as well as developing personal projects.

Her work has been exhibited at the Copenhagen Festival of Photography, OFF Bratislava Festival of Contemporary Photography as well as solo and group exhibitions in the UK, Italy, Armenia and the US.

Paola's work is concerned with the representation of cultural identity, its shifts and states of transition and how these relate to the territories we inhabit. Paola's practice is rooted in concepts of human geography and utilises a straight visual approach that combines landscape and portraiture.

Since 2016, Paola has collaborated with the European University Institute (Florence) to create a body of photographic work that visually represents the migration crisis at the edges of Europe. This body of work supports the anthropological research project EU Bordercare, and is currently being exhibited in various locations around Europe.

She's the course leader of the Fashion Photography BA and responsible for developing ethos and strategies for the course.
Paola designed the curriculum, as well as being responsible for the planning, delivery, assessment , feedback and quality assurance. She has further responsibilities related to recruitment, student progression and retention.

Furthermore, Paola is an external examiner for the Fashion Photography BA at London College of
Fashion and for the Art and Design BA (Hons) – Fashion Pathway (Top Up) at the City of Liverpool College University Centre.

Group Exhibitions and Photography Festivals


  • Off Bratislava Festival of Contemporary Photography, Bratislava, Slovakia


  • ‘Shifting Stances’  group exhibition (curator and exhibiting artist) at Museo Palazzo Riso, Palermo, Italy 


  • Exhibition “Borders” organized by Shutter Hub at Bridewell Theatre Gallery, London.
  • Shutter Hub Open 2018, Truman Brewery (London) and 5&33 Gallery (Amsterdam)
  • Ginnel Photo Festival, Suffolk. Award Winner. 


  • Royal Photographic Society, selected for the International Photography Exhibition 160 showcased at Truman Brewery (London) and other 3 locations in the UK.


  • “Territorial” group exhibition (curator and exhibiting artist) at The Bank Space Gallery, London Metropolitan University. Part of East London Photomonth.


  • Copenhagen Festival of Photography, selected for “The Censored Exhibition” with the body of work “Borderlands: The Edges of Europe”
  • “‘Who Gets Carried Away By Europe” Award, The Jungen University, Berlin. Award exhibition – finalist selection

Solo Exhibitions



  • “Borderlands: The Edges of Europe” Solo exhibition, The Waterfront Gallery, Ipswich

Lectures and Artist Talks




  • Off Bratislava, Festival of Contemporary Photography, catalogue (2022)
  • Points of Entry, photographic series featured in book “Chez Toi” by Sandrine Martin, published by Casterman, France
  • Borderlands. Istantanee ai Confini dell’Europa” Leonardi, P. (2020) in “Il Dialogo Creativo 2020: Parole Sull’Europa” edited and published by Il Dialogo Creativo. 
  • Royal Photographic Society IPS 160 exhibition catalogue 2017
  • Copenhagen Festival of Photography 2015, catalogue. “Borderlands: The Edges of Europe” project.
  • Copenhagen Festival of Photography 2014, catalogue. “Undrawn Hours” project
  • La Repubblica (newspaper- Italy) “Borderlands: The Edges of Europe” featured, June 2013
  • Vignette Magazine “Undrawn Hours” featured 2012
  • Darwin Magazine “Borderlands: The Edges of Europe” with an essay by Victoria Cheape, Vol. 6 November 2016
  • La Repubblica (newspaper – Italy) “Undrawn Hours” featured April 2011
  • Landscapes Stories Magazine “Undrawn Hours” featured in Issue 04 2011

Online Press Releases 


Photographer working on commission for private and corporate clients.


2016-2020 European University Institute, consultant on the
anthropological research project “EU Bordercare”, ERC Starting Grant.

2011- present Vice-President of the foundation “Fondazione Archivio
Leonardi”, Modena, Italy.
Fondazione Archivio Leonardi is finalised to the preservation, study and
promotion of the work of Architect Cesare Leonardi.
Fondazione Archivio Leonardi participates in exhibitions worldwide,
such as Somerset House Design Biennale 2018 and “Nous Les Arbres”
Fondation Cartier 2018. Leonardi’s work has been featured in
museums such as MoMA New York and V&A Museum
Contemporary Furniture gallery.

Paola Leonardi
Course Leader Fashion Photography