The first full scale, Olympus-sponsored photography festival opens its doors at Harrogate International Centre, bringing together hands-on professional workshops, unseen imagery and thought-provoking content with a live music social, all weekend long.
“This is an important film. A loud and clear expose about the desperate times we are living in. It’s also about one of the great voice to emerge from these times: Sleaford Mods. Comfortable with it or not, they stand tall as a beacon of hope, an outlet for a nation’s frustration. If you’re angry about the bullying ruling bastards and you give even half a toss, you have to watch this film.” – Maxine Peake
Organisers today announced the final line up on a show that is expected to bring 5,000 people through its doors on the weekend of November 9th,
Sharon Price, Festival Director, said “We’ve put our heart and soul into curating unique takes on three clear themes of music, war and marginalisation to make internationally-renowned photographic art fun, exciting and accessible to all, as well as highlighting topical issues. We’re hoping people take the time to come and experience some brand new, unpretentious creative projects. It’s not formal, intimidating or academic, just the best stuff in the one place.”
The glamour of Sony award-winning photographer Tom Oldhams‘ Last of the Crooners’ gets its first ever gallery airing at Photo North, vivacious work that is in stark contrast to Northern social documentary photographer Tish Murtha’s Youth Unemployment shots which are coming home for their first ever Northern showing.
The music themed line-up includes 12 year old break-through acoustic artist, Poppy Eaglesham, currently featured on the BBC’s ‘Got What It Takes’, playing alongside Keeper of Bees and local classical pianist Karen Singleton.
Co-founder of the Global Underground movement Dean Belcher’s ‘My First Vinyl’, includes his vintage record player serenading sitters attending his 45min portrait salons with the first ever vinyl record they bought.
Hilary Roberts Imperial War Museum curator and Anne McNeill of Bradford’s Impressions Gallery consulted on artists dedicated to commemorating the centenary of the First World War through the front-line women photographers of the era’s unseen before pictures. Tom Stoddart’s haunting and poignant reportage ‘Shadows of War’, a video remembering the armistice sits alongside dedicated humanitarian and conflict photo journalist, Paula Bronstein’s World Press Photography Award-winning work on the daily effects of war on Afghan civilians.
Giving the under-represented in society a voice, Sleaford Mods, the film Maxine Peake said ‘if you’re angry about the bullying ruling bastards and you give even half a toss about…” has earned a two-hour screening each day. Undiscovered documentary photographer John Bolloten’s controversy raising ‘Nothing to See Here’, documenting two years of homelessness and addiction in Bradford, complements iconic Northerner Tish Murtha’s remarkable images on austerity and the young, which are presented posthumously and rather poignantly, by her daughter Ella.
A percentage of print sales throughout the exhibition highlighting marginalisation, social realism and austerity will be donated to homeless charity Simon On The Streets.
Reuters global photo-journalist will be on hand for free portfolio reviews.
Some of the world’s top photographers will come to the North from 9-11 November, to present their works through an exciting range of interactive events in the first international festival of its kind, Photo North.
Brought together in a single venue in the spa town of Harrogate, UK, a back drop of street food vendors, live music and licensed bars will play host to exhibitions, book zine stalls, photo walks, portrait salons, workshops, portfolio reviews, screenings and live chats, all championing photography and open to the public for the three-day festival.
The curators of Photo North, Peter Dench and Sharon Price have secured participation from iconic names including Tish Murtha, Harry Borden, Jane Hilton, Tom Oldham, Tom Stoddart, Paula Bronstein, Jenny Matthews, Anastasia Taylor Lind and Dean Belcher.
To commemorate 100 years since the end of WWI, the festival will show Tom Stoddart’s Shadows of War, a stunning reportage of the battlefields and war memorials in Belgium and France.
As one of the exhibition keynotes, Tom remarked, “This is great news for international photography, to not only bring the public in to see some incredible images but to also offer hands-on talks and seminars.”
The headline exhibition for the 100 year commemoration will be ‘Women and War’, curated with the Imperial War Museum and Anne McNeill of Impressions Gallery, an exhibition by female photographers examining the impact of war on women. From women fighting a war to mothers displaced by war and the often courageous stories behind them.
Another highlight of the festival is Jane Hilton’s, ‘All Lit Up’, an ongoing project of people, places and objects that have been lit up in America. A stunning nod to American culture where living the American Dream is a constant part of people’s lives.
Sharon and Peter have secured the sensational line up to deliver a thought-provoking, lively and inclusive festival that will appeal to the professional photographer, photo-enthusiast, keen amateur and anyone who wishes to engage with the timeless appeal of the medium.
Photo North Festival promises to be the most exciting and engaging new photo exhibition in the UK.
Peter Dench and Sharon Price are founders of The Curators and the former highly acclaimed film and photography gallery White Cloth Gallery.