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Photography festival promotes culture and beauty of Lishui

China Daily| Updated: November 23, 2021 L M S


The opening ceremony of the fourth International Photography Symposium and the 2021 Lishui Photography Festival was held at the Lishui Grand Theatre in the city in East China's Zhejiang province. CHINA DAILY

Artists from around the world take part in renowned event boosting global bonds

Beginning in 2022, the FIAP World Photographers Conference, which will be hosted every two years, will be permanently located in Lishui, according to Riccardo Busi, president of the Fédération Internationale de l'Art Photographique during the opening ceremony of the fourth International Photography Symposium and the 2021 Lishui Photography Festival held on Nov 17 in Lishui, East China's Zhejiang province.

As the 10th session this year, with its theme "Integrate City Life Into Nature", this festival aims to promote the development of global photographic art and cultural exchanges, and pay tribute to the outstanding contributions and important achievements made by global photography artists, as well as to build Lishui into a famous international photographic city.

According to Riccardo Busi, FIAP decided to cooperate with the Lishui city government to further promote the cultural exchanges in photography among countries around the world, promote prosperity and development, and stimulate the cultural value of photography.

Beginning in 2022, Lishui will set up the "Lishui Photography Art Fund" to organize the "International Photographic Lishui List" activity globally. Three photographers and artists who have made important contributions to the photography all over the world will be selected every two years with the cooperation of global professional photography institutions.

At the same time, it will also provide fund for those who contribute to other art creation fields and photography-related industries.

In 2004, the first Lishui Photography Festival was held with the efforts of the whole city to make Lishui glamorous and its abundant photographic resources the best artistic works of both Chinese and foreign photographers.

With the help of the outstanding works and social influence of the artists, Lishui's natural scenery, historical charm, ethnic customs and urban and rural new appearance have been spread widely.

After 17 years of perseverance and development, the Lishui Photography Festival has become a golden name card for cultural exchanges between China and the world photography community, not only opening a window for Lishui, but also paving a "Cultural Silk Road" for Lishui photography art to the world.

The Lishui Photography Festival was once evaluated by the media as "the photography festival that opened the era of curators", and was repeatedly rated as one of the most powerful photography festivals and the annual national best photography festival.

In 2015, the Lishui Photography Festival was identified by the State Council as the only photography-themed festival in China.

Created in 2004 by the Lishui government and the China Photographers Association, the Lishui Photography Festival was incorporated into the city's cultural policy to reinforce its label of "the Chinese City of Photography" given in 1999 by the China Photographers Association, and to build its reputation as a cultural and touristic center.

The 2021 Lishui Photography Festival has attracted participants from more than 120 countries and regions. Both the number of works and participants have exceeded any previous photography festival.

During the festival, over 12,000 works have been received from global photographers in the First International Natural Environment Photography Exhibition and the Eighth China International Digital Photography Exhibition.

A total of 8,717 photographers, curators and 171 organizations from more than 120 countries and regions around the world signed up for the exhibition with 887 artworks carefully selected.

These works ranged from some world-renowned photography institutions and professional universities such as the FORMAT Photography Festival in the United Kingdom, Photolucida Festival in Portland, Yale University, the China Academy of Art, and Central Academy of Fine Arts to the works of world-class masters in the history of photography such as Henry Talbott, Alfred Stiglitz and Edward Steinken and some young artists and college students at home and abroad.

"We hope that all the works displayed at the Lishui Photography Festival can be shared by photographers and the people of Lishui as well as those around the world," said Wang Peiquan, director of the office of the organizing committee of the 2021 Lishui Photography Festival. The five-day event included the opening and closing ceremony, international seminars, a themed exhibition, artist-in-residence programs, photography product expositions, cultural tourism product fairs and online and offline interactions.

Specifically, the festival held the International Conference of the World Photographers Conference, the inauguration ceremony of the International Classical Craft Imaging Center and the International Handmade Print Symposium, 2021 International Symposium on Photography Education and other special sessions in Lishui, 2021 Lishui Photography Festival Imaging Products Exhibition, 2021 WanXiang Photo Art Fair and a series of lectures by famous photographers.

Besides, there are "Seven Alleys" third season resident art creation projects, "Street Snap China in Lishui" competition, "Smiling Face Theme Activities" for Huawei cell phone users, industry project signing ceremony and more than 40 professional photography exchange activities, industry project cooperation activities and cultural tourism experience activities.

"As a policewoman, I didn't have much time to take pictures when working. But, I was deeply infected by the good photography atmosphere of Lishui as the city provides good teachers and teams for me," said Wang Juping, a policewoman from Lishui city public security bureau's Liandu district branch.

"I started to take pictures of scenery in the Ou River in my hometown. Now, my hobby of photography and my work as police are integrated, which has largely enriched my life," Wang told China Daily.