|Posted on January 18, 2011 at 7:38 AM|
London Street Photography Festival 7 - 17 June
What is Street Photography?
"If you can smell the street by looking at the photo, it's a street photograph" Bruce Gilden
Street photography has been one of the most influential and important photographic traditions of the last 150 years providing unparalleled documentary evidence of life, social habits and journeys in the public realm. Inspiring artists, writers and historians, street photography promotes an appreciation of the ordinary and extra-ordinary in everyday life.
Street photography can be interpreted in many ways but the London Street Photography Festival defines it as:
“un-posed, un-staged photography which captures, explores or questions contemporary society and the relationships between individuals and their surroundings.”
Situated in public environments – which are often but not exclusively, urban – street photography is perhaps more easily defined as a method than a genre. Subjects and settings can vary greatly but the key elements of spontaneity, careful observation and an open mind ready to capture whatever appears in the viewfinder are essential.
Another key aspect of street photography is the sense that the captured scene is unplanned, with an absence of prior arrangement. Thus, generic scenes from pre-planned public events do not have the same feeling of chance encounter and spontaneity as the activity being photographed is pre-planned. However if a photographer knowingly attends an organised event he or she could still capture a spontaneous and unrelated street scene.
© David Gibson
Why Street Photography?
Currently there is no London-wide photography festival and no organisation in the UK dedicated to preserving street photography as an accessible art form, important tool for communication and method to document and reflect on society and human behaviour. This is the gap we aim to fill.
LSPF will give street photography a home in the UK and provide Londoners with a celebration of their city through this essential tradition. The festival will question, support and provide a platform for dialogue around street photography, raising the profile of photographers and their work. In today's paranoid climate, anti-terror legislation threatens to disrupt photographers working in public so it is more vital than ever to uphold and celebrate the genre.
Interaction with local communities will be of prime importance, as well as established and amateur photographers from across the UK and beyond, reflecting London’s diversity and global influence. LSPF will also develop an archive of London street photography, forming a unique contemporary portrait of society to inform, educate and inspire future London generations.
"The newspaper lies, the radio lies, the TV lies, the streets, they howl with the truth." Henry Miller
The festival takes place over 10 days (7-17 July) with a diverse programme of exhibitions, events, talks, walks and workshops. In this first year, exhibitions will be curated by the festival team and partners rather than through submissions. However, we invite street photographers from around the world to enter the first Street Photography Awards which include a Student Award (open to UK-based students) and an International Award (open to photographers from all over the world). Check out our Competitions page for details or take a look at the website London Street Photography Festival
The majority of activities will take place in and around King’s Cross, which has a rich heritage as an industrial hub of London. New developments and regeneration are now transforming it into a creative and cultural focal point, with media and arts organisations such as The Guardian and Central St Martins School of Art relocating to the area.
Satellite exhibitions and events will take place across London.
© Nick Turpin
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