Lancashire Photography Festival reveals full photographer line up

Posted on - 15th May, 2023 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Arts, Avenham, City Centre, Parks, Preston City Centre, Preston News, Proud Preston, What's On in Preston, Winckley Square
Hands holding a vase of flowers Pic: Bobby Beasley
Pic: Bobby Beasley

The UK’s biggest outdoor photography festival launches in Preston this June displaying major projects from several internationally-acclaimed photographers.

The work of Martin Parr, Jenny Lewis, Maryam Wahid, Ian Beesley, Dougie Wallace, Serena Dzenis, Bobby Beasley, Tim Hetherington and Sarah Maple will be displayed in parks and on walls across the city.

Many more photographers will have large-scale single images on display, while an extensive engagement program will see multiple opportunities for local people to take part in the festival, either by taking photographs or by being photographed.

These engagement projects include the famous Clarks Preston is My Paris advert-inspired portrait session and 48hrs in Preston where photographers have been invited to photograph the city and help create a unique archive of the people who live in Preston.

Thousands of school children across Lancashire will experience the festival via their own private exhibitions on school premises, which will be sent to them in the post. 

Other events and opportunities during the festival include photo workshops, photo talks, projections, live-stream photo walk, a community photo wall, pop-up portrait sessions, photography performances and a world-first photographic parade.

The lead photographer taking part in Lancashire Photography Festival is Martin Parr, the UK’s foremost documentary photographer who is known around the world for his bold, satirical images documenting human life.

Man asleep on a deckchair Pic: Martin Parr
Pic: Martin Parr

Social-documentary photographer Jenny Lewis exhibits images from her stunning One Day Young projects – where new mothers were photographed within 24 hours of giving birth – in Miller Park.

Woman holding a baby Pic: Jenny Lewis
Pic: Jenny Lewis

Yorkshire-based Ian Beesley will show a selection of his stunning black and white Northern industrial images in Winckley Square.

Children in a derelict outdoor area Pic: Ian Beesley
Pic: Ian Beesley

Street photographer Dougie Wallace, whose critically-acclaimed books include Stags Hens and Bunnies: a Blackpool Story, and Harrodsburg – both published by Dewi Lewis – will exhibit his stunning brash people-focused images in Avenham Park.

Maryam Wahid’s work focuses on the identity of British Pakistani Muslim woman and will exhibit images from her stunning The Hijab project. 

Serena Dzenis surreal Icelandic landscapes, taken during lockdown in 2021, have already won several awards. The breathtaking images will also be displayed in the city’s Avenham Park.

Industrial building in an Icelandic landscape Pic: Serena Dzenis
Pic: Serena Dzenis

As part of several festival legacy projects, photographer Andy Ford will spend this summer photographing Lancashire agricultural shows. This will work will be shown during the festival via projector and will be exhibited during the next festival in 2024.

In 2021, the trial version of the festival saw over 200 large-scale images displayed outdoors across 16 locations across the city, showcasing the work of over 60 photographers.

Read more: Pictures of Lancashire Photography Festival’s opening weekend in Preston

The festival is funded by Arts Council England, with support from Friends of Winckley Square CIC.

Organiser Garry Cook said: “I’m delighted to finally unveil the names of the photographers taking part in Lancashire Photography Festival 2023. Some of these photographers have been onboard with the project for months, even before the application process started.

“Everyone I have asked to be part of the festival has said yes and I’m delighted to have not just incredible talent but such a diverse range of images from wildly different subjects and in hugely contrasting styles of work.

“The festival, unique in its scale and outdoor focus in the UK, offers Preston an opportunity to be truly unique in arts and culture. There’s still work to do but if I can get more people on board in the next few years I think Preston can finally stand up for itself as the vibrant thriving risk-taking cultural hub it wants to be.

“Photography is one of the UK’s most under-rated art form, but it has a dedicated hardcore fan base willing to travel hundreds of miles to see photography exhibitions and great images. There is already a massive network of photographers and photography fans in the city. 

“I’m going to build on this wonderful base and, alongside festival projects such as the free exhibitions I’m posting to schools, I’m going to make every person in Preston a photography fan, proud of their city.

“I’ve had such a brilliant response from building owners, who have given me wall spaces, and Preston’s park staff. Their co-operation has given the festival the chance to be a cultural event which will change people’s perceptions of the city.

“Huge thanks must also go to Preston’s Town’s Fund Strategic Board chair John Chesworth who met with me 18 months ago when the project was just an idea on three pieces of A4 paper. He backed me right from the start and, in co-operation with the Friends of Winckley Square, has helped made the festival possible.”

Full details about Lancashire Photography Festival can be found on the Enjoy the Show website.

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