Joshua Mann Pailet is a dealer and collector of fine-art photography, a documentary photographer, and the proprietor of A Gallery for Fine Photography in New Orleans, Louisiana. As a photographer, Pailet documents once-in-a-lifetime events such as the 1976 American Freedom Train, the 1984 World’s Fair and the aftermath and devastation of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. He opened A Gallery for Fine Photography in 1973, making it one of the first art galleries to be devoted solely to fine-art photography.
Joshua Mann Pailet was born June 30, 1950 in New Orleans, the son of Charlotte Mann Pailet and Gustave Pailet. His mother was born in 1924 in Brno, Czechoslovakia to a Jewish family, and was the only member of her immediate family to survive the Holocaust after she was rescued along with 668 other children as part of the Kindertransport effort organized by Sir Nicholas Winton. Pailet’s parents met in London at the end of World War II – his mother was working as a nurse and his father was a United States Army Lieutenant – and moved to America to Gustave’s birthplace, New Orleans, in 1945. The family then moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where Pailet lived before attending Rice University, graduating with Bachelor’s degrees in Accounting and Economics in 1973. At Rice University Pailet was first exposed to photography under the tutelage of Eve Sonneman, and was mentored by world-renowned art collectors John and Dominique de Menil of the Menil Collection. After his graduation, Pailet then returned to his birthplace of New Orleans and opened A Gallery for Fine Photography that same year.