Article by David McGirr.
Taken during the 2012 Festival.
Krakow is an impressively photogenic city, which also plays host to one of the major photography events in Europe, Krakow Photomonth, (Miesiąc Fotografii w Krakowie.)
2012 marks the 10th Jubilee edition and takes place at venues across Krakow from 17 May to 17 June 2012.
Each year Photomonth traditionally adopts a theme, which this year is ‘Join Us’ (DOŁĄCZ). This year's 10th Jubilee edition promises to be ‘unique in many respects’ to which the organisers extend an invitation to "JOIN US, celebrate our birthday, celebrate photography".
Photomonth in Krakow is organised by the Foundation for the Visual Arts. As well as producing festivals showcasing the best of world and Polish photography, the foundation aims to show photography in a completely new context.
One of their objectives is to preserve the archives of photographers, which may otherwise be lost, photographers whose work is not being properly cared for or preserved by any societies or institutions.
Photograph collections would be acquired by the foundation and subsequently published, thereby creating a permanent national collection of the foundation, creating documentaries of various artists which may otherwise have been lost or forgotten bringing them back to life, preserving their work.
Many such artists have produced some great work in everyday, common documentary and artistic work during the years who are a part of Polish Photographic History.
So What Is Krakow Photomonth?
Krakow Photomonth has secured a place as one of the most respected Photography Events in Europe and enjoys favourable critical acclaim. The festival has grown from rather humble beginnings in 2002 and has over the past decade gone from strength to strength attracting major exhibitions from world famous photographers whilst continuing to support and encourage young and experimental home grown photographers.
The festival constantly strives to be innovative and has a reputation for using interesting and unique public spaces, such as a former brewery, the Schindler Factory, public washhouses and private apartments as well as more recognisable exhibition spaces.
Aside from individual and collective exhibitions, the festival also features a wealth of photography events such as workshops, screenings lectures and a portfolio revue. The accompanying ‘ShowOff’ Section 2012, showcases ten individual exhibitions selected by a jury from over 600 applications.
The free programme, in English and Polish, is available from the festival office and cafes/venues; it provides a comprehensive guide including a detailed venue map. Lookout for the top quality festival catalogues.
Chris Killip 2010 Exhibition.
The vast majority of the exhibitions are free, however a handful charge a nominal admission.
The Main Program this year includes exhibitions by the following prestigious photographers:
- SERGEY BRATKOV (MOCAK) - While Men Are at War
- JASON EVANS (ZPAF Gallery) - Pictures for looking at and sculpture for photography.
- JERZY LEWCZYŃSKI (National Museum in Kraków) - Jerzy Lewczyński. Memory of the Image
- RENÉ MAGRITTE (International Cultural Centre) - The Fidelity of Images. René Magritte and Photography
- SALLY MANN (Museum of Ethnography) - The Family and the Land
- ALEXANDER RODCHENKO (National Museum in Kraków) - Alexander Rodchenko. Revolution in Photography
- VIVIANE SASSEN (Pauza Gallery) - Parasomnia
- LIEKO SHIGA (Manngha Centre) - Canary
- CEZARY PIECZYŃSKI (Starmach Gallery) - Live Flesh
Further details in English and Polish can be found here: Krakow Photomonth Festival
Have a read of David's advice on photographing the city of Krakow