We were so excited to have Celia Davies as one of our judges for the festival. Celia has been a stalwart of the south coast art scene for some time now and we are sure she will lead Photoworks in exciting directions over the coming years. Today she took the time to answer a few questions…
Please can you tell us a little bit about the judging process from your perspective? What did you see that excited or surprised you?
Night Contact submissions attracted a diverse range of work in subject and in medium – lots more documentary video work than I might have expected for this platform, that offers lots of projects to see for one night only. I welcomed this, I think it’s positive as it suggests that an audience will take the time to engage with issues and ideas found in the narrative of the longer film pieces as part of the evening – in different venues and street locations around Dalston. Such work shown alongside more fleeting projects create the necessary festival dynamic.
Does the emergence of new festivals such as Night Contact influence the work you do at Photoworks?
Photoworks produces the Brighton Photo Biennial so festivals to us are really important in bringing new talent, new ideas and a considered programme to big audiences. It’s all about impact in a limited timeframe in unusual contexts, not just gallery venues. So for us being asked to judge for Night Contact is inspiring and mutually supportive as we share this vision. The Night Contact event is really bold, unexpected and generates a buzz, projects like this always inform our thinking.
What do you hope to see more of in the future, either in terms of structures to disseminate content, or in terms of the content itself?
Well, one possibility might be to invite thematic work? More time to select? A weekend not just one night? Broadcast potential…