Obscura Festival: Back again... even bigger and better!

A visitor at the Japanese Photography Showcase at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi
A visitor at the Japanese Photography Showcase at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi

GEORGE TOWN, Aug 18 — Calling all photography buffs!

Obscura Festival — a young and dynamic photography festival — is back for the second year but this time, it is bigger and more exciting with more photography showcases, talks and workshops.

This festival within a festival — as it is a part of the annual George Town Festival — has lined up 14 exhibitions, five masterclass workshops, 10 talks, five slideshows and a Photobook show between now and August 31.

Some of the exhibits have already been up since August 11 and are on display at various exhibition areas all over George Town.

Obscura Festival director Vignes Balasingam said 12 of the 14 photography exhibitions picked this year feature work by young emerging photographers.

Obscura Festival director Vignes Balasingam. — file pic
Obscura Festival director Vignes Balasingam. — file pic

“The point of this festival is to feature young emerging photographers telling new stories of Asia instead of featuring only established names in photography,” he said at the launch of the festival at ChinaHouse last Friday.

He said the festival also has some of the world’s top curators and photographers putting up inspiring exhibitions, and conducting workshops and talks so photography talent can be nurtured through education, exposure and connections.

This year, there is a Japanese Photography Showcase and an Asian Women Photographers’ Showcase, both curated by Japanese photography gallery owner, Yumi Goto.

The Japanese Photography Showcase features work by five talented Japanese photographers under the theme Co-Existence.

Nozomi iijima showing visitors her exhibit, The Hidden Blood, which is part of the Japanese Photography Showcase at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi
Nozomi iijima showing visitors her exhibit, The Hidden Blood, which is part of the Japanese Photography Showcase at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi

The works are on display at the art space in ChinaHouse.

The Asian Woman Photographers’ Showcase (AWPS) is in its third edition — it was launched at the Angkor Photo Festival back in 2010 — and features five photographers’ work at the Whiteaways Arcade and the works of nine others will be featured in an AWPS slideshow.

There are also solo exhibitions by established and emerging photographers such as Arrivals and Departures — an impressive black and white collection by Magnum photographer Jacob Aue Sobol — at The Press; Trading to Extinction — a 10-year-project by Patrick Brown documenting the illegal animal trade in Asia — at Poh Hock Seah Temple and Continuum — a series on the transgender community by kG Krishnan — at The Whiteaways Arcade.

There will also be nightly slideshows at The Whiteaways Arcade from now till August 20 which are curated by Yumi Goto, Arko Datto and Leafhopper Project respectively.

For amateur photographers, even professional photographers, wishing to learn more about photography to imrpove their work and build their photography career, there are also workshops and talks to attend from now until August 24 at ChinaHouse.

There is also an event for photobook collectors and enthusiasts as The Obscura Festival International Photobook Show featuring photography books from all over Asia and the world which will be held at Shop Howard from now till August 20.

Admission to all of the photography exhibitions is free. Find out more about the festival here

George Town Festival is an annual month-long arts, cultural and heritage event featuring various programmes and events all over George Town and this year it is being held between August 1 and August 31.

Find out more about George Town Festival 2014 events here.

The Japanese Photography Showcase — Co-Existence at China House. —  picture by K.E.Ooi
The Japanese Photography Showcase — Co-Existence at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi
 
The Japanese Photorgraphy Showcase which is part of the Obscura Festival at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi.
The Japanese Photorgraphy Showcase which is part of the Obscura Festival at China House. — picture by K.E.Ooi.

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