The festival will feature leading artists exhibiting new projects in a series of free exhibitions, alongside a jam-packed programme of talks and workshops from only £5 to inspire people of all ages.
Dark Peak Photo Festival is a brand-new grassroots festival with big ambitions and creative spirit. In the first edition of the festival, artists will respond to the theme of Now & Then, reflecting on the changes that time brings, the nature of memory and the lessons to be learned from history.
The festival will stage a vibrant four-day takeover across Glossop venues and featured spaces, while town centre streets will be transformed into a walking exhibition as works are displayed in participating business windows.
Further free exhibitions and talks have been added to the line-up of leading artists exhibiting new work.
In a fresh addition to the programme of talks, artist Melanie King and director of Glossop Heritage Trust Kate Raine will co-host ‘Now & Then: An evening with… ‘ event at Victoria Hall on Friday, February 23.
The relaxed event will be an opportunity to hear about the ‘Now’ from Melanie King on her work ‘Acquaintance’, and the ‘Then’ with Kate Raine who will bring to life late Victorian and early Edwardian images from the Glossop Heritage Trust Archive.
A new exhibition from award-winning Manchester-based photographer Andrew Brooks has been added to the programme. Andrew’s exhibition will be staged at the Artful Pigeon Gallery as a featured space at the festival.
Details of Andrew’s exhibition and the full programme of events are available on the Dark Peak Photo website here.
Limited tickets are still available for Paul Hill MBE’s talk, ‘Landscape Photography is Not About the Land – Photographing the Peak’.
Paul will explore how visitors to the Peak District are drawn to the area by rural photography and are inspired to recreate those images. His talk will consider on why doing ‘something different’ rarely seems an option, and what different could look like.
All spaces on workshops and talks are limited so book soon to avoid disappointment. Tickets are available via the Dark Peak Photo website here.
The full programme includes a dusk photo walk and exhibition from Not Quite Light (the artist behind the viral Rainstorm image familiar to many photography fans), alongside work from award-winning photographer Kate Bellis, with a discussion on the ethics of photography with photographer and writer Ciara Leeming and more.
Multi award-winning British actor and photographer Bill Ward will be judging the winning image from the Open Call. As an actor, Bill is probably best known for playing Coronation Street’s Charlie Stubbs, and his work in both television and photography has been recognised with multiple awards.
Carys Kaiser, festival director, says: "My initial idea was for a photography festival because where I live there isn’t an event that celebrates photographers and photography of all kinds and all levels.
"Using a camera and creating photography is a growing interest as nearly everyone has access to a camera if they have a smartphone, and this often leads to people moving to DSLR cameras.
"We aren't funded in any traditional way by grants. We are literally a tiny team of three people who are passionate about bringing a good quality photography festival to our area. Part of that is giving free access to the exhibitions because access to culture and arts is so important in bringing communities together."
Vikki Rutter, assistant curator and open call lead, adds: "As a local photographer, it was important to be involved in this festival to bring photography to everyone, to make it accessible, and show professional photography alongside amateur photography work. Amateur photographers are just as creative and perhaps more so with their experimentation."
The exhibitions take place on February 22-25, 2024.