Festival @ Sony World Photography Awards is a week-long celebration of photography that will take place throughout the city of Cannes from 14th – 19th April 2009. No longer the sole preserve of the film industry, the City of Cannes will now host the culmination of one of the world’s largest photographic awards programmes, and celebrate the birth of film through the photographic image.
From the prestigious Palais des Festivals to local galleries, selected hotels, beaches and other landmarks, the Festival will include exhibitions, industry talks, workshops, student programmes, exhibition tours, book signings and portfolio reviews.
The famous Croisette will play host to the stars of the international photographic community as they converge at the Festival, from world-famous photographers such as Mary-Ellen Mark, Sarah Moon and Elliott Erwitt, to media, gallery owners, publishers, agents, critics and collectors. The Festival will also welcome members of the public - from the aspiring amateur photographer to the general tourist and resident of the Cote D’Azur – and the diverse programme of events has something for everyone. Highlights of the programme include:
- Exhibitions of works by both acclaimed and up-and-coming photographers including Stuart Franklin, Cedric Delsaux, Bruce Davidson, Brent Stirton and last year’s winner of the Sony World Photography Awards’ L’Iris D’Or, Vanessa Winship. Most exhibitions will be supported by personal tours with the photographers as well as book signing events.
- The opening night of the festival. This will be hosted by one of the most renowned photographers of our time, Elliott Erwitt, who will be giving the audience an intimate retrospective screening of his life’s work. An exclusive sneak preview of his unseen next project will also be presented.
- The Sony World Photography Awards Ceremony, Party and Gala Dinner, is hosted in the Palais des Festivals on 16 April. It is here that the winners of the 12 professional categories and the nine amateur categories will be awarded their trophies, and the 2009 winner of the L’Iris D’Or for overall SWPA Photographer of the Year will be announced. The final presentation will go to the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Awards winner. The recipient for this honour will be revealed in January 2009 to the international press.
- A final look at last year’s 2008 winners, presented as part of the SWPA Global Tour, an annual touring exhibition of the winners.
- Central exhibitions inside the Palais des Festivals, including the 2009 SWPA Professional and Amateur Finalists and the Lifetime Achievement Award winner.
- A special exhibition by participating students of the SWPA Student Focus programme, showcasing images from 60 countries around the globe with the theme of The Environment.
- Portfolio reviews for professional entrants of the Festival with industry experts such as Grazia Neri, Zelda Cheatle, Andrew Sanigar (Thames & Hudson), Adrian Evans (Panos Pictures), Arnaud Adida (Acte 2 Agence & Gallery), Aidan Sullivan (Getty Images) and Hossein Farmani.
The theme for this year’s Awards is The Environment - using the power of the photographic image to educate and share information from countries across the globe - and this will be reflected in the Festival programme through the chosen exhibitions.
The Deputy Mayor of Cannes, Bernard Brochand, commented, "The city of Cannes is honoured to host the new festival of the World Photography Awards. This annual festival provides residents and visitors with a new week-long programme to celebrate photography and represent a strong cultural addition to our city.
To apply for tickets for the 2009 Festival @ Sony World Photography awards, visit the World Photography Awards