Candidate Profile

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Architecture & its History
Destinations & Ports
History - Art & Culture
History - Maritime
History - Naval
Shore Excursion Escorts
Vikings & Scandinavia
After officer service in the Royal Navy and a long career in business, Justin Reay studied the History of Art and Architecture at Oxford, gaining the University’s Diploma with Distinction, and researched for his doctoral thesis on medieval naval weapons systems at the University of Exeter. A Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and of the Royal Historical Society, Justin is a member of several art history or naval history societies.

Justin is an Accredited Lecturer for the Arts Society, an advisor to the BBC and history foundations and museums in Europe, Australia and the USA, and a consultant in marine art. Formerly a senior academic manager of the Bodleian Library, he is Secretary of the Colloquium of Learned Societies at Oxford and a tutor in the History of Art and Classical Civilizations.

He is editor of Samuel Pepys’ naval papers, to be published by the Bodleian Library in 2020. His architectural study of the Admiralty buildings in London is also in press, and he is currently researching naval and maritime art in the National Trust collections for a catalogue raisonné.

Justin was History of Art enrichment speaker for Viking Ocean Cruises (Iconic Cities of the Western Mediterranean, Viking Sky) in January 2019, and in April 2018 (Trade Routes of the Middle Ages) where he also gave sail-away presentations. He previously sailed with Viking Ocean in May 2017 (Viking Homelands, the Baltic) and Saga (August 2017), and was Naval History speaker for Fred Olsen in December 2012. He is booked as Art History speaker for two further cruises for Viking Ocean in 2019 (Mediterranean and Baltic) and four Viking cruises for 2020 (Mediterranean, Aegean, Atlantic and Baltic), and is also booked as a guest speaker for Fred Olsen in the Braemar (Norwegian Fjords) in August 2019.

(Click images for full size)

Selected Publications:
- Inside Samuel Pepys’s Office: naval documents from the Pepys Papers in the Bodleian Library, Bodleian Library Publications and Society for Nautical Research (forthcoming Spring 2020)
- The Great Ship Ashore : buildings and people of the Admiralty in London, Toothed Dolphin Press, Oxford (forthcoming Autumn 2019)
- “Friend Gayner” and Lord Nelson on the Mediterranean Station, Trafalgar Chronicle (2019)
- Jack Punch: Captain John Perkins, the Royal Navy’s most successful officer, Trafalgar Chronicle (2017)
- ‘The Fighting Cochranes: a naval dynasty like no other’, Trafalgar Chronicle (2015)
- Nelson's Nemesis: Captain Etienne Lucas, the Redoutable and its fight with the Victory, Trafalgar Chronicle (2014)
- ‘Samuel Pepys's naval papers in the Bodleian’, Bodleian Library Record (2010)
- ‘A Place of Considerable Importance : Lord Cochrane at the Siege of Rosas 1808’, The Mariner’s Mirror, vol 95:4, Society for Nautical Research, November 2009; online in the Oxford University Research Archive at:
- ‘In Search of Nelson’s Spy : a research case study’, Trafalgar Chronicle, October 2009; online in the Oxford University Research Archive at:
- ‘Edward Gayner, the Royal Navy’s Man at Rosas : parts I to III’, Nelson Dispatch 2008-2009
- ‘The Royal Navy in the Bay of Rosas 1808-09’, in Díaz Capmany C, Pedler R, and Reay J, El Setge de Roses de 1808: tres visions de la Guerra del Francès, Girona 2008
- ‘Resolve and Endeavour in the Golden Ocean : Cook’s management of his voyages in the Pacific’, BNRA Journal 2008
In preparation:
- Fortune of the Sea: naval and maritime artworks in the National Trust collections (2 vols, due 2021)
Architecture & its History:
1. Admirals, Arias and 'a Few Small Rooms': the Admiralty buildings in London
2. Wren’s Masterpiece: the old Royal Naval Hospital, Greenwich
3. The Venice of the North: the founding and architecture of St Petersburg
4. Nordic Light: Scandinavian and Finnish architecture and design
5. Dutch Art Deco: ground-breaking buildings by Petrus Berlage
6. The English Country House from Vanbrugh to Adam
7. Party Palace: Vaux le Vicomte, the inspiration for Versailles
8. Water, Light and Shade: Islamic buildings and gardens in Andalusia
9. Building on water: the wealth and architecture of Venice
10. Building the Eternal City: the architecture of classical Rome and in the Renaissance and Baroque
11. Calatrava’s Bridge: the amazing contemporary architecture of the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia

Art & Culture History:
1. 'Setting their Hearts on Painting': women artists of the Italian Renaissance and Baroque
2. Bonfire of the Vanities: the art and turbulent life of Renaissance Florence
3. From the streets of Seville to the court in Madrid: the art of Diego Velazquez
4. Taking the Blue Train: Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso discover the unique light of the French Riviera
5. The Bull of the People: Pablo Picasso, art and life
6. El Sordo: Francisco Goya, art and life
7. Sol y Sombra: the bullfighting etchings of Francisco Goya
8. Food for the Eyes: still-life paintings by Spanish and Dutch masters
9. 'Rembrandt’s Eyes': life in the Dutch Golden Age
10. Vermeer’s Camera: buildings and people by Johannes Vermeer
11. The Happiness of Life: the colourful art of Henri Matisse
12. Southern sun in the north: Spanish paintings at the Hermitage
13. Conversation pieces: stories behind portraits from the English masters
14. 'He has fired a gun': marine paintings by J M W Turner
15. The Enlightenment in Russia: the Hermitage’s Walpole collection
16. Faces of the Steelyard: the life of the Hanseatic merchants and their portraits by Holbein
17. 'A painted ocean': the sea and ships in marine art
18. 'All a-sparkle with gunflashes': naval actions and heroes in marine art
19. Polar Art: paintings, sketches and photographs by Polar explorers
20. Motion and Emotion: sculpting the human figure in classical Greece
21. Gods, Warriors and Wine: Greek vase painting in the Classical period
22. The 'New City' and the Grand Tour: collectors and artists in Naples of the 18th century

Maritime History:
1. The First European Union? The Hanseatic League and world trade
2. Silk Road of the Sea: the maritime trade routes from China to Europe
3. 'With courage, nothing is impossible': the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and its work

Naval History:
1. Nelson’s Nemesis: Captain Etienne Lucas, the Redoutable and her fight against the Victory
2. Jupiter and Mars: competition at sea between England and France
3. Titans at war: Thomas Cochrane and Etienne Lucas at the Battle of Aix Roads 1808
4. Nelson’s Spy in the Mediterranean: Edward Gayner, wine merchant, Quaker and spy
5. 'I see no ships': Nelson at Copenhagen 1801
6. In the Footsteps of the Hero: Nelson at the Admiralty
7. Jack Punch at War: the extraordinary life of Captain John Perkins, Britain’s first black officer
8. 'By the Rocket’s Red Glare': the Siege of Baltimore 1814
9. 'Something's wrong with our battleships today': the battle of Jutland 1916
10. The Mystery V.C.: Gus Agar and the Kronstadt raids 1919
11. A Man of Appetites: Samuel Pepys, diarist and naval official
12. The Saviour of the Navy? Dr John Harness and the Scurvy Debate
13. Experiments and Observations : the Admiralty, the Royal Society and the discovery of new worlds
14. 'Thrast up agaynst the rayls' : the Death of Lord Admiral Edward Howard at Conquet, 1513
15. The British Royal Navy and the Bay of Rosas 1707-1922
16. 'To render an effectual service…' Collingwood’s Star Captains on the Coast of Catalonia
17. 'That Plain, Rough, English Admiral…': Sir Cloudesley Shovell and the loss of the Resolution, 1707
Viking Sea (Viking Ocean): Viking Homelands cruise Stockholm to Bergen, July 2019: four talks on History of Art (including link to Hanseatic League) and three sail-away scenic commentaries (Stockholm Archipelago, St Petersburg and Copenhagen).
Viking Sky (Viking Ocean) Iconic Cities of the Western Mediterranean, Rome to Barcelona, January 2019: four talks on art history
Viking Sky (Viking Ocean) Trade Routes of the Middle Ages, Barcelona to Bergen, April 2018: five talks on art history and two sail-away scenic commentaries (Barcelona and Portsmouth)
Saga Pearl II (Saga): Dover to the Baltic, August 2017: five talks on History of Art
Viking Sky (Viking Ocean): Viking Homelands cruise Stockholm to Bergen, May 2017: three talks on History of Art (including link to Hanseatic League) and two sail-away scenic commentaries (St Petersburg and Copenhagen).
Black Watch (Fred Olsen): Christmas Markets cruise Southampton to the Baltic and return, November-December 2012: six talks on naval history and art history
Justin frequently researches and lectures on all of the following sub-categories:
- Hanseatic League
- Silk Roads - Overland and Maritime
- Art Galleries and Museums
- Art History
- Art Markets and Art Auctions for investors
- Paintings, drawings and prints
- Art Photographs
- Sculpture
The following recent Cruise History has been recorded for this candidate.
Viking Sky SK191006 Mediterranean Odyssey 12 Barcelona Sunday, October 6, 2019
Viking Sea SE190704 Viking Homelands 14 Stockholm Thursday, July 4, 2019
Viking Sky SK181230 Southern Mediterranean Discovery 7 Civitavecchia (for Rome) Sunday, December 30, 2018
Viking Sky SK180414 Trade Routes of the Middle Ages 14 Barcelona Saturday, April 14, 2018
Saga Pearl 11 P2181 White Nights of the Baltic 16 Dover Friday, August 4, 2017
Viking Sky SK170506 Viking Homelands 14 Stockholm Saturday, May 6, 2017