PICTURED: Allotrope (touch) by Lydia Goldblatt

FORMAT 2019 will once again welcome artists from around the world to the historic city of Derby, as it brings new and exciting contemporary photography to the UK for a ninth edition entitled FOREVER//NOW.

Founded in 2004, FORMAT has helped place the UK photography scene on the international cultural map, making it a must-attend event.

FORMAT19 – FOREVER//NOW runs from 15th March to 14th April 2019 throughout Derby, in the city’s museums, art galleries and historic, pop-up and renovated spaces and buildings. There are over 50 exhibitions, including portraits of Elvis impersonators and off grid Siberian communities; documentary projects on the tribes of native Indians and the post conflict and wartime landscape of North Africa; a French treasure hunt for buried gold and the search for the truth behind the exclusive Bohemian Club in America – just a few of the many extraordinary photography stories to discover.

QUAD in Derby has three main exhibitions, which take place in the month-long festival and beyond. Mutable, Multiple is the festival’s lead exhibition, featuring six artists who use the narrative potential of photography to engage with their subject. Artists Max PinckersEdgar MartinsStefanie MoshammerAmani WillettAnne Golaz and Virginie Rebetez present photographs which challenge modes of documentary and storytelling, exploring narrative, history, memory and myth, looking at issues of entrapment and disappearance, fantasy and escape, exile and longing. Curated by Tim Clark and Louise Fedotov-Clements, Mutable, Multiple is in QUAD Gallery One from 15th March to 9th June.

Birth by Richard Ansett

new commission and UK premiere by Japan-born, Venice-based artist Kensuke Koike, entitled Happy Ending, presents an exhibition of collages, drawn from the city’s important photographic archives, W.W. Winter.  Kensuke Koike is a cut paper master who works with images and materials such as found photographs to produce intricate collage, installation and sculpture with skill and humour.  The artist has a taste for image re/construction, and his work has impressive precision and a considerable international cult following on Instagram. Curated by Louise Fedotov-Clements and Peter Bonnell, Kensuke Koike, Happy Ending is in QUAD Gallery Two from 15th March to 9th June.

FORMAT Open Call presents the work of photographers and artists who have been selected via an international Open Call in response to the FORMAT19 festival theme FOREVER//NOW. The photographs include diverse themes such as colonialism, identity, censorship, resistance and the reuse of archives. Artists featured are: Maria Sturm, Karl Ohiri, Liza Ambrossio, Steven Barritt, Garrett Grove, Xu Guanyu, IC Visual Lab (Alejandro Acin & Isaac Blease), Seunggu Kim and Gloria Oyarzabal. FORMAT FOREVER//NOW Open Call is in QUAD Extra Gallery Spaces from 15th March to 9th June.

FORMAT19 takes place in Derby from 15th March to 14th April. The biennale festival incorporates QUAD, University of Derby, Derby Museum & Art Gallery, Déda, Market Hall, BEAR, Artcore, St Werburgh’s Chapel, Pickford’s House, Eagle Market Intu, The Tramshed, Banks Mill, Furthest From the Sea and Unfold Arts. 

The festival also includes Derwent Valley World Heritage Sites, Market Place and satellite venues. The festival was established by QUAD in 2004 and is the UK’s leading festival of photography and related media, organised by QUAD and DMARC, the Digital and Material Artistic Research Centre of the University of Derby.

FORMAT Festival Director, Louise Fedotov-Clements said: “This years’ edition for FORMAT is proving to be the biggest and boldest international event that we have directed to date, featuring more than 200 artists from more than 50 countries, alongside a rich programme of exhibitions and events, FORMAT is a vital force in the cultural ecology for practitioners and audiences alike.”

Find out more details about this year’s event at the festival website:


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