Channel / 23 Dec 2019

Round up of 2019: Happy New Year

As 2019 draws to a close, it is the right moment to reflect both on all that Ffotogallery has achieved this year and the amazing contribution that our Board, staff, volunteers and interns, partners and contributing artists have made to the organisation's continuing success.

The first six months of the year saw our last exhibitions at Turner House and Castle Street - Amak Mahmoodian, Lua Ribiera, Michal Iwanowski, Marcelo Brodsky and Paul John Roberts, and of course the epic fourth biennial edition of Diffusion: Cardiff International Festival of Photography, with the theme Sound+Vision. DIffusion 2019 was the most ambitious one yet, curatorially, exploring many aspects of 'expanded photography' and the relationship between the visual and aural, from 3D photography and 360 degree immersive cinema with live performance, to interactive installations and interdisciplinary projects on parallel physical and virtual platforms. During Diffusion, we formally launched the Creative Europe project A Woman's Work with a symposium at the Wales Millennium Centre.

Liminality at Diffusion 2019 (Photo by Phil Jenkins)

In a curatorial partnership with the National Assembly of Wales, to mark 20 years of devolution, six Welsh artists and photographers were commissioned to produce new work for a touring exhibition, Many Voices, One Nation, which Ffotogallery is touring from Cardiff to Aberystwyth, Merthyr and Caernarfon.

Installation shot of Luce + Harry's work at Aberystwyth Arts Centre (Many Voices, One Nation)

In July we finally moved into Ffotogallery's new home in Cathays, Cardiff, and after an initial fit out we opened our doors to the public in September with Croeso, an exhibition of selected works from our archive where Cardiff is the subject. Between October and December we presented the first major exhibition at our new space, The Place I Call Home, a major cross-cultural exhibition using photography to explore the idea of home through the experiences of people living in the Arabian Gulf and UK at a time of rapid change and social mobility. In parallel, we presented separate editions of the exhibition in Kuwait, Oman and Qatar. By March next year The Place I Call Home will have been presented in 10 venues in 7 countries.

Ffotogallery's new home in Cathays, Cardiff

That momentum continues into 2020, and from January onwards we will present solo and group exhibitions in Cardiff, Wales, Europe and the Middle East. We will also be developing our space and facilities to accommodate a wide range of arts and community activities, and to be as inclusive and welcoming we can to all visitors. At home and 'on the road', we are proud to be presenting high quality visual art, to provide a platform for emerging talent, and to deepen the audience's engagement with contemporary photography and lens-based art, in all its forms.

Happy New Year!

David Drake,

Director, Ffotogallery