May 20, 2024

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The perpetual movement of photography and the world

The perpetual movement of photography and the world

The annual photography festival reaches its 27th edition with artificial intelligence as a topic of discussion and the idea of ​​variability as inspiration

Every movement means change, and every change means death. Maria SantoyoDirector of the twenty-seventh edition of International Photography Festival PHotoEspañaHe sees photography as a paradoxical duality: “a perpetual motion machine capable of stopping time.”

The festival will start on May 10 It will host nearly 300 visual artists who will be spread across the world 84 exhibitionsAvailable until September 29th. In addition to exhibitions, the management has scheduled seminars aimed at addressing the challenges that arise in relation to creativity: artificial intelligence.

Movement and its different meanings are the central idea of ​​the entire festival: “This edition celebrates the movement of photography as a medium, and its development. And also the movement in photography; that is, Represent that movement in the picture. And finally, photography of body movements, sexual, urban and historical movements, as well as the movement of photographers themselves in the practice of their craft, says Santoyo. “Photography for us is a machine of perpetual motion in which we want to make different proposals.”

Madrid will be the center of the photo exhibitions, although the programming will spread throughout the country and reach Almería, Barcelona, ​​Valladolid and Zaragoza, among other cities. Likewise, Santander will resume the role it played in previous editions as the second headquarters of PhotoEspaña.

The variety of ways in which movement can be conceptualized is implied in the book's title Always mobileIt is a metaphor that “defines one of the dreams of modernity: the photographic camera,” says the director. “From my camera, that is Perpetual energy machineIt responds to the festival in which the call for continuity and the representation of movement come together.”

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Among the highlights of the exhibitions, the Círculo de Bellas Artes will host a group exhibition also titled permanent mobile, Which will bring together the works of 27 photographers trained in both analogue and digital technology and born in democracy. According to the festival director, “They guarantee a bright future full of references for future generations.” Santoyo explains that his exhibition is “not nostalgic at all.” Instead, these are large collective “titles.” Installation and light sculpture practices Who intend to turn the enclave into a photography park.”

Likewise, PHotoEspaña 2024 will focus on three major retrospectives of European photographers: Dutchman Erwin Olav (1959-2023), at the Villa Fernán Gomez Cultural Center through an exhibition aimed at celebrating his life and career after his death. The Ukrainian's works will be exhibited at Serrería Belga Boris Salev (1947), one of the greatest colorists in history, and a witness to the dismantling of the Soviet Union. Finally, the most famous works of the Swiss-Venezuelan photographer Barbara Brandley (1932-2011), known for works she developed between the 1960s and 1980s, will be exhibited at CentroCentro.

In addition, it will be shown exclusively in Spain at Círculo de Bellas Artes Crowsthe Japanese photographer's introspective and impressionistic series Masahisa Fukase.

Digital Vanguard

In order to understand the current panorama facing the field of photography, Santoyo emphasizes the new “Educational projects” proposed by this edition. Through them, PHotoEspaña 2024 encourages its audience to think about using new creative technologies: “It is important to experience the dissidence that avant-garde art requires,” he says.

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In addition to a documentary film that aims, according to the director, to “teach reading pictures.” PHotoEspaña, in collaboration with Telefónica Foundation, will organize a series of seminars Discussing the challenge of artificial intelligence in the visual arts. “We want to open this analytical dialogue with experts: the creators who use the tool and experts in their different fields: ethical and legal,” he explains. In this sense, visual artists such as Philippe Kostic or Sofia Crespo -One of the most representative figures of generative art on the international scene- will discuss new media integrated into the visual arts.

Santoyo realizes the power of artificial intelligence: “It is frequently applied in some professional and creative photography practices.“He explains. Yet he is optimistic: “The use of technological tools associated with creativity always generates a certain anticipatory fear, but the visual arts always integrate new media as they are presented to them,” he concludes.

Over time, photography has evolved and adapted to the social trends of the time. Visual artists with long careers such as Paloma Navarrese, whose work will also be featured in this edition, “have incorporated artificial intelligence into their creations,” says Santoyo. In this way, the edition director stated that the use of artificial intelligence does not kill the medium. Instead, he focuses on human capabilities: “We have to do it They have a critical spirit And knowing what we encounter when implementing those techniques.