The program of the 20th edition of Fotofestiwal is prepared jointly by Łódź curators, activists, creators, universities and students. Together, we will create a story about the city whose fascinating history combines the creative pursuit of avant-garde artists with the popular working-class culture.
The program will include exhibitions referring to the history of the city, meetings of local galleries and artists, and, most importantly, presentations of the most interesting achievements of artists associated with Łódź, whose accomplishments have become a permanent element of the canon of Polish art. A particularly large block of exhibitions will also be devoted to the contemporary world photography. We will show several international projects and platforms aimed at promoting and presenting the rising stars of contemporary photography. When it comes to numbers, Fotofestiwal 2021 includes over 40 exhibitions around Łódź, two festival centres, and presentations of the works by over 150 visual artists.
The main part of the Fotofestiwal program is being developed under the supervision of Prof. Józef Robakowski and is dedicated to the art scene in Łódź. Exhibitions will be shown in Art_Inkubator at 3 Tymienieckiego Street, as well as in galleries and informal spaces throughout the city. In the second festival centre, OFF Piotrkowska, among others, exhibitions prepared jointly by three universities in Łódź will be shown: the Lodz Film School, the Academy of Fine Arts and the University of Lodz. The exhibition of photographs from the collection of Muzeum Sztuki (Museum of Art) in Łódź, organized jointly by the Festival and the Museum, will be another special event. This unique collection of photographs, gathered over the years by Urszula Czartoryska, will be presented at ms2 at 19 Ogrodowa Street. As every year, there will also be international projects. The Festival program will include, among others, a collective exhibition of the works created by the Open Call finalists, presentations of European photo platforms: Parallel and Futures, and exhibitions by photographers who have been invited to artistic residencies.
The Łódź art scene is based primarily on grassroots, often anarchist and anti-system initiatives. It is the result of collective energy, and it is thanks to such energy that the jubilee edition of Fotofestiwal is being created.
1) Collective exhibitions curated by Prof. Józef Robakowski at Fabryka Sztuki
(over 40 artists, including Małgorzata Potocka, Aleksandra Ska, Karolina Breguła, Karolina Wojtas, Grzegorz Przyborek, Ryszard Waśko, Andrzej Różycki, Piotr Zbierski)
2) The first ever exhibition of the photography collection of the Muzeum Sztuki/Museum of Art in Łódź
(approx. 200 works, including Andy Warhol, Natalia LL, Karol Hiller, Zofia Rydet, Zbigniew Libera Jerzy Lewczyński, Roman Opałka, Stefan and Franciszka Themerson)
3) Exhibition of photographs by Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz “Witkacy”
(“Multiple portrait”, Signum Gallery, reference to the exhibition from the Museum of Art in 1979)
4) Stories from the city of Łódź – historical and contemporary exhibitions about Łódź
(documentary exhibitions by Maciej Rawluk, Ula Tarasiewicz, Artur Urbański, as well as coloured photos from the 1920s and 1930s by Wiktor Jekimenka from the Veolia archive)
5) Academic space; exhibitions prepared by three universities in Łódź
(University of Łódź, Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź, Film School in Łódź)
6) Exhibitions from the STREFA MIASTO project
(ca. 30 exhibitions in museums, galleries and temporary spaces, including by Bogdan Konopka, Agnieszka Kurant, Sebastian Collet, Iacopo Pasqui, Bartłomiej Talaga)
7) Exhibitions from the international Open Call
Including by Federico Estol (Uruguay), Colin Delfosse (Belgium) Sima Choubdarzadeh (Iran) Rafael Heygster & Helena Manhartsberger (Germany), Robin Hinsch (Germany), Irmina Walczak (Polska)
8) Exhibitions from the European photography platform PARALLEL
(exhibitions presented by 30 young artists from around the world summarizing the annual cycle of one of the largest European projects supporting creators; the Parallel Platform brings together 19 institutions from all over Europe, such as galleries, festivals, and photo magazines)