The Copenhagen Photo Festival (CPF), founded in 2010, is a young but promising showcase for both Danish and international photography. In its five years of existence, it has done an admirable job of creating a new platform through which to explore contemporary photography, spur discussions and present new work to the world.
The program for 2015 is as diverse and cutting-edge as ever. It includes a selection of both Danish and international artists:
Street Photography | Fragments, Stories & Complex Austerity, Martin Selway and Alberto Grasso display photography shot in their home countries (the UK and Italy respectively). Selway’s combination of architectural imagery with humanistic elements prompts a subtle contrast between people and their spaces. Grasso, meanwhile, focuses on drawing the viewer into his subject’s world through light and visual storytelling.
Benita Marcussen focused on the growing silicon doll trend in her series Men & Dolls. These intimate portraits show the relationships between owners and their silicon dolls.
Sculptor Matt McCullen’s mannequin company began receiving an influx of requests for sex dolls in the 1990s, and 20 years later, his company is still growing alongside the burgeoning silicon doll community. While only 10% of doll owners see their doll as a partner, these relationships run deep. While many of these men fear society’s perspective on their lifestyle, the dolls give them a sense of comfort, and ease their loneliness.
Balancing on the edge between fact and fiction, Markus Henttonen’s Twisted Tales—Road to Hope tells the story of a road trip through images. The presentation mirrors the way memories appear as sudden flashes of images. The melancholic undertone hints at familiar memories and emotions meant to mirror life itself: a melange of joy and despair, the present and the past.
Tonje Boe Birkeland examines feminism and societal expectation. Character # IV retraces Anna Aurora Astrup’s route in 1900 as she mapped Greenland’s coastline. By focusing on exploration scenes, Birkeland contrasts men and women’s mutual need to control and colonize with women’s passive societal role.
Young Stringers , a collaborative project by Babur Payman, Yassine, and Mazim Ait Bouzaid, uses street photography to reach inner city youths in the multiethnic North Western side of Copenhagen. Using photography and street culture in tandem, Young Stringers inspires youths to become role models within their peer group.
Editor’s Note: For an in-depth look at these works, as well as access to the wide range of events, the Copenhagen Photo Festival will be running from June 4th-14th, 2015. Additional exhibits and events will be updated to the CPF site regularly until the opening of the festival.