FORMAT23: Save the date

16 March – 9 April 2023

What Photography Can Be 

FORMAT International Photography Festival – organised in partnership between QUAD and the University of Derby – returns in March 2023, emerging from the days of global pandemic with renewed purpose – poised to transform the historic city of Derby into a vibrant showcase for the very best photography and lens-based media being produced today.  

The days of lockdown were seen by many as a chance to reflect and recharge, upending perceived agendas and to think about the world anew. For FORMAT23 we invite our audiences and our colleagues to stop, take stock and consider ‘What Photography Can Be’. 

FORMAT23 will feature exhibitions in key Derby cultural organisations such as QUAD, Déda, Artcore and the Museum of Making, alongside revitalising repurposed buildings and public places, celebrating work by a worldwide community of artists. Notable exhibition projects as part of the festival include Radical Souls at QUAD that will focus on global dance genres and notions of self-identity, and a new body of work by award-winning photographer Oliver Frank Chanarin at the Museum of Making that explores ‘the drive for attention, the complexity of being seen and the anxiety of being overlooked, in the shifting terrain of documentary photography’. 

Across 12 venues more than 200 artists from 55 countries present works that examine themes that matter now – water scarcity and future food provision; migration; questions of what identity is, and the implications of climate change. FORMAT23 will be OPEN to discussion, to debate – and will feature the return of the international Conference and two Portfolio Review days alongside the FORMAT Photobook Market. We invite you to shape the photography of now towards a future of what photography can be.  

FORMAT is organised by QUAD and the University of Derby and is supported by Arts Council England, Derby City Council and multiple partners from the UK and abroad. The FORMAT23 Press Launches have been generously supported by Marketing Derby.   

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  • Opportunities
  • Participation Event
  • Open Call
  • Mass Participation
Now Closed
2 December 2022 to 15 January 2023
  • Opening Weekend
  • Opportunities
  • Participation Event
  • Photobook Market
Now Closed
24 November to 30 December 2022
  • Opening Weekend
  • Opportunities
  • Participation Event
  • Photobook Market
Now Closed
24 November to 30 December 2022

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