The 16th edition of the International Photography Festival in Lodz – Fotofestiwal has just started. As every year, the opening of all main program exhibitions takes place after the results of the Grand Prix Fotofestiwal 2017 competition and Photographic Publication of the Year 2017 are announced.
Grand Prix Fotofestiwal 2017 and the prize of 10,000 PLN went to Dominika Gęsicka for the project This is not real life.
Author writes about her project: “There is a place where no one is born and no one dies. Of course you can die anywhere but you cannot be buried here as it has been discovered that bodies fail to decompose here. You cannot be born here because pregnant women are to return to the mainland to give birth. There are no cats, no trees, no traffic lights. There is no amusement park, but there is a circus troupe. In the winter time it is completely dark, but in the summer sun never sets. The place is called Longyearbyen and it is the largest settlement and an administrative center of Svalbard. It is also the world’s northernmost city. Although it is difficult to regard it the best place to live, many people fall in love with it at first sight. Some people come here just for two weeks and stay for five years or more, but not many decide to settle down here permanently. Sometimes you have an impression that people here are trying to escape from something; that this is just a retreat. This is not real life…“
Title of Photographic Publication of the Year was awarded to Foundation Archeology of Photography and Museum of Warsaw, for the photobook Zofia Chomętowska. Photographer’s Album.
The jury of the Photographic Publication of the Year summed up this choice: ”
The awarded publication is a perfect example of how great works and biography can inspire further generations, how instead of monumental monographs, one can create a fascinating collection of stories. Light form, accessible, universal, interesting. This is a completely unique approach to biography, which does not overwhelm with the topic – the life of creator, how one can work with archives, without the classic division into private and public work. It is a publication for watching and for reading, and if needed – it is also a scientific work. Finally, the most important aspect – it is a new quality for the photographic culture in our country: we are awarding a book which is not niche and understood only by a narrow group of photobooks’ enthusiasts. Last but not least: this is a perfect example of collective work involving researchers, archivists, photo editors, graphic designer, preparation for print, scanning, etc. Congratulations!”
Jury gave also a special mention to the book 11.41 by Michał Łuczak and Filipa Springer.
Exhibitons of the winners and finalists of both competitions can be seen until June 11 at Fotofestiwal in Art_Inkubator, Tymienieckiego 3.