A Guide To May 2024 Photography Festivals & Exhibitions

  • Published
    17 Apr 2024
  • Author
  • Topics Festivals

EXPOSED Torino Foto Festival, Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography, Beate Gütschow and Laure Winants at Foto Arsenal Wien, Photo London, CONTACT Photo Festival and Captured Earth at MoCP are among the photography events to visit this month.

EXPOSED Torino Foto Festival

Turin, Italy / 2 May - 2 June

Directed by Menno Liauw (founder and director of Futures) and Salvatore Vitale (visual artist, senior lecturer at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, co-founder of Yet Magazine, artistic director of Futures and PhMuseum Mediae Head Professor), the new International Festival of Photography will bring temporary exhibitions and a wide range of activities to Turin's main cultural institutions and independent realities.

Under the theme New Landscapes, the inaugural edition of Exposed will present the works of a vast array of contemporary artists such as Max Pinckers, Simone Niquille, Mónica de Miranda, Lebohang Kganye, Fin Serck-Hanssen, Erin O’Keefe, Hiền Hoàng, Paolo Pellion di Persano, Graeme Arnfield, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Anna Gaskel, Larry Johnson, Sherrie Levine, Tracey Moffat, Collier Schorr, Wolfgang Tillmans, The Otolith Group, Fabio Barile, Mathieu Asselin, Dongkyun Vak and Kalina Pulit. An extended program further broadens the scope of the festival, managing to involve the cultural landscape of the entire city.

With collaboration being a key aspect of the festival's artistic direction, a spin-off of the Sprint Art Book Fair will also be part of Exposed, along with Exposed Photomatch: A Completely Different Portfolio Review – the inclusive, democratic and unconventional format of portfolio reviews created by Fotofestiwal Lodz and now extended to the Italian festival.

The program of talks will follow four independent lines of research: ethics and politics of representation, images and technology through AI, circulation and photographic industry, and a series of artist talks titled In Transition.

Find out more about the expansive program on their website.

Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography 2024

Biel/Bienne, Switzerland / 3 May - 26 May

The 27th edition of the Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography examines the banal and the familiar as a form of resistance to the proliferation of sensationalist images constantly imposing themselves in our lives. Directed by Sarah Girard and coordinated by Estelle Moser, the event presents a generation of emerging photographers who subtly shed light on phenomena transforming our environment and our daily life.

Among the exhibitions dislocated in the city are Apostrophe by Brigham Baker, Algues Maudites, A Sea Of Tears by Alice Pallot, Movement In The Alpine Landscape by Pedro Rodrigues and Notre Pain Quotidien by Lalie Thébault Maviel. The program involves events such as the projection of Blue by Derek Jarman, Palette(s), a performance by Cédric Gagneur & Marc Oosterhoff and My name is Fuzzy, a concert and performance with Bastien Bron and Léopoldine HH tackling everyday themes against a backdrop of disco music and casualness. Plus, a series of talks will include a discussion between Urs Stahel and Brigham Baker.

Visit their website to discover more.

Beate Gütschow and Laure Winants at Foto Arsenal Wien

Wien, Austria / 22 March - 23 June

The new center of photographic images and lens-based media in Austria is presenting Beate Gütschow and Laure Winants' solo shows curated by Felix Hoffmann, offering contrasting yet complementary perspectives on the environmental challenges facing our world today.

Gütschow's Resistance, Flood, Fire, Resistance, capturing scenes of protest crowds and the aftermath of disasters like floods and fires in Germany, invites viewers to reconsider their perceptions of catastrophe. Rather than sensationalizing these events, Gütschow's images provoke a quieter, more contemplative response, encouraging both emotional engagement and critical reflection. In contrast, Winants embarks on a multidisciplinary expedition to the Arctic, where she explores the subtle interplay of light, ice, and water. From A Tongue We Are Losing delves into the sensory experiences of this remote environment. Her experimental series, Time Capsule, further immerses viewers in the otherworldly beauty of the region, exploring the phenomena of light and color in the Arctic.

Find out more on Foto Arsenal Wien's website.

Photo London 2024

London, United Kingdom / 16 May - 19 May

Under Kamiar Maleki's new direction, the British fair is building a strong international list of galleries featuring many new and returning names. Curated by the critic and author Charlotte Jansen, the Discovery section will be dedicated to emerging photographers and galleries, among whom Palm* Studios (London) and Deák Erika Galéria (Budapest).

Photo London’s presenting partner Belmond will bring the works of artists such as Durimel, Coco Capitán, Jack Davison, Jeano Edwards, Letizia Le Fur, François Halard, Rosie Marks, Chris Rhodes and Thomas Rousset. Among the highlights of the Public Program, the Prix Pictet Lounge will host conversations led by the Executive Director Isabelle von Ribbentrop, bringing together inspiring photographers who have previously won, or been shortlisted for the award.

Discover more on Photo London's website.

CONTACT Photo Festival

Toronto, Canada / 1 May - 31 May

The 28th edition of the festival features lens-based and mixed-media works in exhibitions, public art installations, and commissioned projects at museums, galleries, and public spaces across the Canadian city. Its events will explore topics of anti-colonial practices, community-building, Afro-futurism, crip liberation, ceremony, revolution, and personal and collective memory, addressing violent gaps in historical archives.

The program involves 35 public artist talks, workshops, portfolio reviews, and initiatives such as the Photobook Lab, the Sustenance Artist Mentorship Residency, and the Constellation Public Art Guest Curator Program. Held at the CONTACT office in downtown Toronto, the three-day workshop Structure and Sequence led by artists Cristian Ordóñez and Kate Schneider with guest photographers, editors, and designers like Tiffany Jones, Melissa Pallini, Martina Zanin and Shane Rocheleau will guide participants in finding a clear direction for their photobooks, to be then proposed to grants and publishers.

Visit CONTACT Photo Festival's website to discover more.

Captured Earth at MoCP

Chicago, USA / 24 May - 18 August

Curated by Kristin Taylor, Captured Earth shows how artistic visual languages can express connection to the earth and its magnitude. Exhibited works range from site-specific performances, such as Tarrah Krajnak’s documentations of her nature-centered rituals using rocks and plant material, or Alan Cohen’s walking meditations on the equator. Other artists employ natural elements to create experimental process-based works, such as Jeremy Bolen’s prints produced from film developed in a polluted river or Barbara Crane’s photographic transfers of tree bark, leaves, and fungi she gathered at her Michigan cabin retreat.

Discover the complete list of exhibited artists on MoCP's website.

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Also open this month:

Fotografia Europea 2024 / Reggio Emilia, Italy / 26 April - 9 June

Directed by Tim Clark, Walter Guadagnini and Luce Lebart (photography historian, exhibition curator), the 19th edition of the Italian festival attempts to represent nature by exploring the interconnection between concealment and discovery. Exhibitions include Susan Maiselas, Helen Sear, Yvonne Venegas, Arko Datto, Matteo De Mayda, Jo Ractliffe, Natalya Saprunova, Terri Weifenbach, Lisa Barnard, Bruno Serraloungue, Karim El Maktafi, Silvia Infranco, Silvia Rosi, Marta Bogdańska and Michele Sibiloni. Contaminations, the 11th edition of Giovane Fotografia Italiana, will showcase the works of the 7 finalists of the Luigi Ghirri Prize.

Circulation(s) 2024 / Paris, France / 6 April - 2 June

Created and organized by the Fetart collective, every year Circulation(s) selects young European photographers questioning the boundaries between photography and contemporary art. For its 14th edition, Centquatre-Paris will showcase 24 artists whose works are characterised by a predilection for fluidity and experimentation. A Focus exhibition is dedicated to Ukraine, presenting the series of four photographers from this territory.

Liquida Photofestival 2024 / Turin, Italy / 2 May - 5 May

In the framework of Paratissima and curated by Laura Tota, the third edition of Liquida Photofestival brings together emerging authors and professionals under the theme Rebirth, as an invitation to consider one's existence as a second possibility, an attempt to investigate the infinite possible declinations that life can confront us with beyond the expectations imposed by social canons.

PHotoESPAÑA 2024 / Madrid, Spain / 29 May - 29 September

Under the new direction of María Santoyo, PHotoESPAÑA aims to answer that question with one possible response: Perpetuum mobile. The main program of exhibitions includes artists like Rehab Eldalil, Seif Kousmate, Amina Kadous, Nadia Bseiso, Wafaa Samir, Marcos Rico, Marie Høeg and Bolette Berg, Edward Burtynsky, Fina Miralles, Anastasia Samoylova and more. The festival also includes a series of exhibitions as part of the OFF program.

Fotofestival Lenzburg / Lenzburg, Switzerland / 25 May - 23 June

Transforming its host town into an open-air photo gallery with 20 exhibitions, photobooks corners in the bars, and a rich program of events including portfolio reviews, workshops, and talks with authors and experts, the Fotofestival Lenzburg's new edition will be focused on theme Synthesis.

Revela’T Festival 2024 / Vilassar de Dalt, Spain / 18 May - 16 June

In this 12th edition, the festival invites visitors to observe, explore, and represent identity from various perspectives, during a month-long celebration of analog photography that includes exhibitions, markets, workshops, portfolio reviews, residencies and many other activities, bringing together in the same space relevant and emergent artists, some of them being exhibited for the first time.

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Check out our festivals and exhibitions page to get a complete view of what's coming up on the photography calendar over the next few months.

© Dongkyun Vak, EXPOSED Torino Foto Festival
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© Dongkyun Vak, EXPOSED Torino Foto Festival

© Tarrah Krajnak, MoCP
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© Tarrah Krajnak, MoCP

© Laure Winants, Foto Arsenal Wien
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© Laure Winants, Foto Arsenal Wien

© Pedro Rodrigues, Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography
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© Pedro Rodrigues, Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography

© Martin Parr, Rocket Gallery at Photo London
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© Martin Parr, Rocket Gallery at Photo London

© Nuits Balnéaires, CONTACT Photo Festival
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© Nuits Balnéaires, CONTACT Photo Festival