Austral Islands copyright RAI 10796The RAI has a unique and extensive archival photograph library. Consisting of over 75,000 historic prints, negatives, lantern-slides, drawings, paintings and other images, the earliest of which date from the 1860s, it provides a scholarly service to a large number of academic researchers, students and responsible commercial users. It contributes strongly to public awareness of the RAI, and provides a practical interface between the Institute and a wide range of audiences and disciplines. The anthropology of visual culture is becoming increasingly central to the discipline as a whole, and interest has correspondingly grown. The material contained in the photographic library is highly relevant to contemporary, as well as historical, concerns. From time to time, the photographic library provides a focus for exhibitions, events and publications of interest to visual anthropologists and historians of anthropology. For more information about the collection visit:

Click here to explore some of the images online and purchase copies.

Discover Anthropology has several photo galleries which contain pictures from the RAI's archival photo library:


image© Nafisa Fera The RAI's Education Outreach Programme has also launched it's own flickr website where you can look at photos from educational outreach events, contests, and other related activities. Join our Discover Anthropology Facebook group to keep updated on events, activities and contests!