All posts tagged: Festivals

Brighton Photo Biennial unveils its 2014 programme

Photoworks, the organisation behind the Brighton Photo Biennial, has announced the lineup of exhibitions and events for the sixth edition, which takes place from 04 October to 02 November. The announcement was made last night at The Photographers’ Gallery in London, where a packed audience of industry professionals eagerly awaited  the news. The last edition, BPB12, focused on the ‘politics of space’, and this time the focus is on collaboration and community. There is no single curator, but rather an emphasis on partnerships. “We felt there was a current vibe around people working together – partly through necessity, and also through the generosity of shared expertise,” Photoworks director Celia Davies told BJP last night. “Choosing a single curator didn’t feel like quite the right thing for this Biennial.” More than 45 photographers, artists, and collectives will showcase work, both commissioned and received through open call, across a range of venues in Brighton and nearby Hove and Eastbourne. [bjp_ad_slot] At the centre of the packed programme is Simon Faithfull’s Reef, a commissioned project that will see a boat towed out to sea and sunk off the coast of Portland in Dorset. Cameras …

2014-07-25T17:22:08+00:00

Dispatches from Arles 2014: the highs and lows

The opening week of the 45th Les Rencontres d’Arles festival has come to a close, but the 50-plus exhibitions continue until 21 September, so there is plenty of time to check out what outgoing director François Hebel has programmed for his final edition. As some commentators have argued, this year’s programme feels slighter than in previous years, and there is little doubt that feelings towards its success are mixed. At the FT, photography critic Francis Hodgson detects a hesitancy as Arles ponders its future. Hebel is departing for pastures new after overseeing 15 editions, as Sam Stourdzé, former director of the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne, Switzerland waits in the wings to take his place. Sean O’Hagan of The Guardian also notes that this is a pivotal year, and comments that the festival, the theme of which is ‘Parade’, is “less surprising” than in previous years. L’Oeil de la Photographie writes the festival off completely. [bjp_ad_slot] For me, it was a mixed bag with both disappointments and a few gems. Exhibitions such as David Bailey’s Stardust, on tour after a stint at the National Portrait Gallery in London earlier this year, seemed misplaced, …

2014-07-25T17:44:49+00:00

Les Rencontres d’Arles: The search for a new director

The city of Arles is entering a new photographic era – Maja Hoffmann’s Luma Foundation has started work on the promised Contemporary Art Centre, which will transform the city into one of France’s largest art centres. Yet, the project, worth €100m, will also force Les Rencontres d’Arles to scale back the size and number of exhibitions it hosts each year, a situation that led to François Hebel’s resignation as director [read our interview with Hebel here]. We speak with Daniel Barroy of the French Ministry of Culture, a major investor in Les Rencontres d’Arles. Olivier Laurent: How important are Les Rencontres d’Arles for the Ministry of Culture? Daniel Barroy: For us, it’s France’s main photographic event. It’s essential. Les Rencontres is the largest festival in France, not only in budgetary terms, but also in the number of visitors. In 2013, there were 100,000 paying visitors, which is very good. It’s also an important festival because of its length – it lasts the entire summer. Finally, it’s also important for the local economy. It’s at the …

2014-03-15T21:41:24+00:00

Les Rencontres d’Arles: Director François Hebel questions the festival’s future

BJP

François Hebel first directed Les Rencontres d’Arles festival in 1986 and 1987. When he returned in 2001, it was to an event on the verge of bankruptcy, with €450,000 in debts and just 9000 visitors per season. He spent the following 13 years redefining Les Rencontres, taking possession of the celebrated Ateliers, where most of the exhibitions take place each year, and bringing back private sponsors to develop a stable and healthy economic model. Yet, when the city took the decision to sell the Ateliers to Maja Hoffmann’s Luma Foundation, a conflict arose which led to Hebel’s resignation. As he prepares to present his last Rencontres, he speaks to Molly Benn of Our Age is Thirteen. Molly Benn: The festival was bankrupt when you became director in 2001… François Hebel: Yes, the Rencontres had debts of €450,000. At that time, the overall budget was around €1m; it had no sponsors and there were around 9000 visitors each year. We had to draw up an economic plan. I first turned my attention to the sponsors. Then, once …

2014-03-14T16:02:35+00:00

Photoreporter festival reconsiders goals after financial struggles

Photoreporter is a festival like no other. Launched in Saint-Brieuc, France, in 2012, its concept was to call on local businesses to finance photojournalists’ projects around the world. Alexandre Solacolu, the festival’s creator, had the simple idea of transposing the idea of sponsorship, which has been widely adopted within the sport industry, to photography. From the start, the industry has been ecstatic, with photographers and magazines embracing the festival’s potential and optimism. “Photoreporter’s main goal is to become a laboratory, which can be used to find new economic models for the industry,” Solacolu told BJP in 2012. “I’d love to see other organisations, especially in the media industry, use our model to finance and develop new work.” For Didier Rapaud, the festival’s first curator, Photoreporter brought hope to an industry in dire need of it. “I’m not talking about a revolution, but there’s a ray of sunshine that didn’t necessarily exist before.” In its first two years, the festival had planned to raise €300,000 from local businesses to finance projects by photographers such as Guy Martin, …

2014-03-12T14:50:10+00:00

Review: Düsseldorf Photo Weekend

Düsseldorf, capital city of Germany’s North Rhine-Westphalia state, is known for its lively arts scene and strong links to photography. Most famously in 1976, Bernd and Hilla Becher began teaching photography at the Kunstakademie in the city; before this, the arts academy focused mainly on painting. The Bechers’ influence was profound and long lasting; their teachings contributed to the German photographic movement known as the Düsseldorf School of Photography. Former students include Thomas Ruff, Thomas Struth, Andreas Gursky and Candida Höfer, all of whom went on to become some of the world’s most successful photographers. [bjp_ad_slot] This photographic legacy is played out at the city’s annual Photo Weekend (which took place this year from 31 January to 02 February), most prominently through the work of Höfer, whose mini retrospective at the Museum Kunstpalast featured prints from across the photographer’s lengthy career. Höfer opened up her archive especially for the exhibition to reveal there is far more to her photographic oeuvre than the familiar photographs of empty public spaces. Alongside the large-scale colour prints of the interiors of opera houses, museums, libraries and …

2014-02-11T16:13:03+00:00

Winners of Düsseldorf Photo Weekend Portfolio Reviews announced

Now in its second year, the winning photographers of Portfolio Review 2014 have been named as Maurice van Es, Oliver Hartung, Christian Kryl and Jan van der Til. The photographers were awarded prizes to the value of €9000 at an awards ceremony in Düsseldorf last week. Van Es, Hartung and Kryl were each given €2500 to produce a photo essay commissioned by arts organisation Arte Creative. Van der Til was awarded a voucher worth €1500 for high-end photo printing at Düsseldorf-based photo lab Grieger. In addition, every participant was given a premium account at online platform Salon.io, and will have the opportunity to participate in workshops to create their new websites at the company’s offices in Berlin. The portfolio reviews took place at art museum NRW-Forum in the city centre during the third Düsseldorf Photo Weekend from 31 January to 02 February. Participants were invited to submit two portfolios to the professional photo-led jury. The 27 successful photographers (including one duo) were then invited to present their work to a panel of reviewers in front …

2014-02-10T09:20:39+00:00

New photography festival takes over Northeast England

“We are interested in how photography can be received and accessed socially,” says Carol McKay, co-founder of The Social: Encountering Photography, a new festival in Sunderland and the Northeast of England that presents a month-long series of exhibitions and events in and around the region. “The idea was to present Sunderland as ‘a hub’ for photography, to bring the focus to the city. Part of the thinking behind it is the notion of encountering photography in gallery and non-gallery contexts so we have shown work in a wide range of venues across the region such as metro stations, advertising spaces, old historic buildings as well as galleries.” Two years in the planning, The Social, programmed by McKay and Amanda Ritson of the North East Photography Network (NEPN) with Alistair Robinson, curator at the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art (NGCA), grew out of the activities of the NEPN, which was founded in 2009 to provide a platform of opportunities and support for photographers and artists living and working in the region. Featuring both commissioned work and …

2013-12-11T12:30:57+00:00

Don McCullin to headline Visa pour l’Image’s 25th edition

“To have such a distinguished 25-year-old festival, which has a huge following, invite me to have an exhibition there, I feel honoured and proud,” says photographer Don McCullin, who spoke to BJP ahead of Visa pour l’Image’s press conference. “I’m going to enjoy it. You know, when you get to my age, the idea that someone is still interested in your work is quite extraordinary.” McCullin will receive the largest exhibition ever presented at Visa pour l’Image, where he will present a retrospective of his work in Cyprus, Vietnam, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Bangladesh and Lebanon. He will also show images shot in England and Somerset, as well as his most recent work from Syria. [bjp_ad_slot] “For the past 25 years, I’ve dreamt of bringing McCullin’s work in Perpignan,” says Jean-François Leroy, the festival’s director. “We’ve shown all of the big names in photojournalism, but I’ve always felt that McCullin was the missing one. This year, he’ll be there, he’ll be coming, and he will have an enormous exhibition. For the first time ever, he’ll get the Eglise …

2013-12-11T11:59:04+00:00

2012 Guernsey Photography Festival channelling good photography

Held from 24 May – 22 June this year, the Guernsey Photography Festival is now in its third year and remains a promising presence on the European photography festival circuit. Founded by photographer Jean-Christophe Godet, the 2012 edition features around twenty exhibitons plus workshops, talks and exhibition tours. Last year’s theme was ‘Identity’ and boasted an impressive line up including work by Richard Billingham and Martin Parr; this year the theme is ‘Journey’, both in the sense of a physical movement and as metaphor for self-discovery. “I wanted to use the notion of journey as a starting point, not necessarily as in travelling somewhere physically but more in terms of a spiritual or emotional journey,” says Godet. “My aim is to show different styles of photography presented in interesting ways. I want to produce a festival that is as honest as possible and of the highest quality.” [bjp_ad_slot] With few dedicated exhibition spaces on the island the challenge for the organisers is to find and transform suitable spaces, with the festival exhibiting work both indoors …

2014-10-12T11:41:51+00:00

BJP Staff