About Copenhagen Photo Festival

The largest photo festival in the Nordic region runs for the 11th time this year from June 4-14, 2020, with more than 50 exhibitions in collaboration with galleries, museums and cultural institutions in Copenhagen and southern Sweden. Each year, approx. 250 Danish and foreign photographers contribute, and the festival is visited by approx. 55.000 people. For 11 days, photography is on the agenda under the three main pillars Framing Identity, Framing Society and Framing Vision, through exhibitions, workshops, talks, portfolio reviews and more.

The festival focuses on development. New forms of exhibiting, new ways to use photography as well as new talents. Talent can appear at any time, and the festival is interested in presenting those photographers and photo-based artists, who suddenly appear or stand out within their genre. The festival strives to present a programme of high quality – artistically and conceptually and  to build bridges between fine art and documentary photography.

Copenhagen Photo Festival is for the curious, for those who want to break new ground and challenge the idea of what photography is and can be, now and in the future.

Copenhagen Photo Festival works within three programme pillars, building bridges between fine art photography and documentary photography.

Framing Society: Exhibitions concerned with society. Politics, ideology and culture.

Framing Vision: Exhibitions where the medium sets the framework. Aesthetique, technique and media.

Framing Identity: Exhibitions where the individual is in focus. Subject, existence and identity.

Vision and Mission

Copenhagen Photo Festival is more than a photo festival. We wish to strengthen our ability to consider photography as a form of expression. The vision is realized through our mission which is to create a year-round platform, which:

CURATES exhibitions both physically and online via social media

DEBATES through teaching material, discussions and talks

ENGAGES people through workshops and traveling exhibitions

INFORMS about photography via podcasts and videos

Festival exhibitions

The festival’s programme consists of two sections: A curated festival centre and a programme that takes place all over Copenhagen. The festival’s exhibitions are categorized in accordance with three main pillars, Framing Identity, Framing Society and Framing Vision, which contributes to our vision of building a bridge between fine art photography and documentary photography.


Festival centre

Jana Sophia Nolle på Beddingen. Foto: Hans Vedsted

The festival centre is open during the whole festival period and consists of both photographers and visual artists, who have been invited or photographers and visual artists, who have been selected from an open call. The festival centre is curated by the Copenhagen Photo Festival’s programme committee, and the exhibitions show both fine art photography and documentary photography. During the whole festival period, visitors can also participate in guided tours, workshops and screenings.
The festival centre has been located in different areas of Copenhagen, Bremerholm, Carlsberg Byen and Østerbro among others. The festival centre presents both indoor and outdoor exhibitions, including the Copenhagen Photo Festival’s mobile exhibition space, FRAME.

The Censored Exhibition

The Censored Exhibition has been a part of Copenhagen Photo Festival’s programme since 2012. The exhibition, which is presented in the festival centre, is a group show that exhibits works chosen by a jury based on an open call. The jury consists of both a curator, a critic and an artist, one representing the festival. In 2019 the jury consisted of Claire Gould, curator at HAM – Helsinki Art Museum, Elisa Medde, managing editor at Foam Magazine, and Balder Olrik, visual artist and art critic. The works chosen for The Censored Exhibition all fall in the genre of fine art photography, and Copenhagen Photo Festival aims to present contemporary international photo art from the past three years.

On the last day of the festival, selected works from the exhibition go up for auction in collaboration with the renowned auction house Bruun Rasmussen Auctioneers. The idea behind the auction is to focus on the many qualities of photo art as well as give established as well as new collectors the opportunity to acquire hand-picked photo art from all over the world.


Satellite exhibitions

The Photoscope. Foto: Aitor Rubio

Copenhagen Photo Festival also presents several exhibitions in the rest of Copenhagen. These exhibitions are arranged by our exhibition partners, consisting of both established galleries and museums as well as independent exhibition spaces ranging from private apartments to cafés to libraries.

Through these exhibitions, the festival seeks to focus on the role of photography in contemporary art, and the exhibitions are often open past the end of the festival. All exhibitions are chosen by Copenhagen Photo Festival’s programme committee and will be featured in the printed as well as the digital programme.
Previous exhibition partners include Det Nationale Fotomuseum, Fotografisk Center and Banja Rathnov Galleri & Kunsthandel as well as Reffen – Cph Street Food, Københavns Kulturcenter and The Italian Cultural Institute. See the full list of exhibition partners here.