Simon is one of the most distinctive directoral talents working in the UK today. He has a unique vision and we are delighted to have commissioned his work for BBCTwo.’

  • Patrick Holland Channel Controller, BBC2

‘Photographing with sensitivity and insight, Simon Frederick has made extraordinary portraits of some of the most influential Britons of our time. We are proud to welcome these works into our collection, where they will be seen, enjoyed, and celebrated for generations to come.’

Dr Phillip Prodger, Head of Photographs, National Portrait Gallery, London.


Born in London, of parents from the Caribbean island of Grenada. Self taught, he has none of the conventions that academia, tradition and technique sometimes dictate. The conventions to be followed by those... incapable of modernising or adapting to changing tastes and techniques.

Simon’s flair for visuals and multidisciplinary approach involves a creative expression that lives outside the boundaries, that mediocrity and convention dictate. He has the confidence to follow the direction his mind's eye reveals to him. That often see’s him walking against the tide of the popularly held opinion or perspective; His work provokes us, in some instances, helping us see from different perspectives.

This is a constant feature of his work; The focus of which, is the visual exploration of people and culture, and the facets of human nature that makes us feel, that engenders his work memorable.

Highly regarded to be at the vanguard of his discipline, with a career punctuated by firsts; Simon has made recent television appearances on Sky Arts, as the lead judge of their debut pan European series Master of Photography, which he co-hosted with Hollywood royalty Isabella Rossellini. He conceived, produced and directed the award winning series Black Is The New Black, for BBC Two, with the portfolio of portrait's that he shot of his subjects during the filming of the show, making history as the largest acquisition of African-Caribbean sitters by the National Portrait Gallery, to become part of the Gallery's permanent collection. The gallery’s director, Nicholas Cullinan, said the portraits were striking and “powerfully reflect the diversity and variety of contemporary British achievement in public life”.

The highlights of 2018 Will see Simon, going into pre production, on a brand new groundbreaking series, that he conceived for the BBC, and will see him directing and presenting; as well as Black Is The New Black, the exhibition opening in September 2018, at the National Portrait Gallery.

Simon was honoured to be recently profiled amongst 2018's 100 'Most Influential Black Britons' in the category of Media,Publishing, & Entertainment alongside Vogue’s Vanessa Kingori and Edward Enninful, Artist and Director Steve McQueen, Actor David Harewood, Novelist Zadie Smith and Actor, Comedian and co-founder of charity Comic Relief Sir Lenny Henry.