Flash Photography Festival On Foot
October 30, 2014 • 1 Comment
Flash Photo Festival on FootToday's assignment: #flashphotofest on foot. How many venues can I squeeze in today.
There are many reasons for taking a walk. One is to chase photography.
2014 marks the inaugural year of the Flash Photography Festival in Winnipeg, the brainchild of local photographer Lief Norman. Because the program runs throughout the month of October, I was unable to participate, being oversees on my own photographic mission on the Prague-Vienna Greenway throughout the festival's lead-up month of September. Now back in town, I need to make amends and at least take in as much of the festival as possible.
On a warm Friday morning at 10:00 am, I set off on a walk, the idea being to take in as many of the festival venues as possible in one day and on foot. It is a democratic tour. I have no hierarchy of photographers’ work I want to see. I am guided only by points on a map, indicating exhibit locations, that lead me in an interesting direction from one to another, taking in as large a swath of the city as possible and as much photography as possible. I have no itinerary, only a starting point at home and a few obvious shows near the beginning of my journey. After that, I will need to chose between multiple points and directions. How many shows I can take in before the galleries close for the day is unknown. I carry one tool: an iPhone loaded with a GPS app to track my walk, the phone's camera and its Photo app for processing and uploading to Twitter in "real time”. On the phone’s browser, the festival website, flashfest.net, is open to a map of the venues.
It is now 8:30 pm and I am home again after a long but thoroughly engaging day, intertwining the discovery of new art and the rediscovery of Winnipeg’s urban landscapes. The camera phone images capture each of those artwork discoveries (and the food that goes so well with a good art walk). The captions are based on Twitter posts made as I walked the walk. The “map” is derived from the day’s GPS track, a to-scale single line loop showing my ad hoc wanderings and otherwise devoid of unnecessary details.
I was able to squeeze in an espresso, hot dog, latte and sandwich as well as 16 shows along my route, a number limited only by the 5:00 pm closing time of some galleries and commercial spaces. Broadly speaking that’s one show every 36 minutes. Without context, it seems a crass way to experience art, to be sure. In the context of a walk, the line between those points-in-space are as much a part of the art experience as the art itself, the experience of a strong image colliding with my gentle slow movement as I walk the streets of Winnipeg. The results may vary depending how the photography and the walking environment resonate. For example, John Paskievich’s photographs of the northern Inuit resonate in interesting ways with my walk down north Main Street. Or the provocative images of Nathalie Daoust's Tokyo Hotel Story, eliciting complex thoughts as I make my way across the shiny St Boniface pedestrian bridge.
Consider the photographs taken on this walk as a kit of parts - festival venues and their photographs - and the map of my walk as the thread holding the parts together. It’s all there, waiting for assembly.
Flash Photo Festival on FootPhoto Central has show of Brandon Sun photog Colin Corneau. Hosts graciously offer expresso.
Flash Photo Festival on FootRobert Tinker's work in the windows of Stella's Cafe.
Flash Photo Festival on FootSalon style overview of Flash photography at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Cheryl Hnatiuk front and centre.
Flash Photo Festival on FootWell that didn't work. Mike Deal's show is lost behind the locked doors of The Don restaurant
Flash Photo Festival on FootBonus!
Flash Photo Festival on FootMike Grandmaison in the Wow! Mabuhay Gift Shop at The Forks
Flash Photo Festival on FootRoberta Bondar at Buhler Gallery, St. Boniface Hospital. Gallery is a hidden Winnipeg gem.
Flash Photo Festival on FootPassing through St. Boniface, Canada's best 'hood on the way to...
Flash Photo Festival on Foot...Louise Dandeneau as seen at Cafe Postal, which has...
Flash Photo Festival on Foot...great coffee and sandwiches
Flash Photo Festival on FootMaison des Artistes. Outside, Claire Burelli's light box. Needs a night visit.
Flash Photo Festival on FootMaison des Artistes. Inside: Nathalie Daoust's challenging Tokyo Hotel Story.
Flash Photo Festival on FootColin Vandenberg's Cocoa farmers in Ghana at Constance Popp Chocolates.
Flash Photo Festival on FootHydro Bldg group show: a selection from MB Hydro's collection.
Flash Photo Festival on FootCaroline Wintoniw. "Where the Light Lands" At PrairieView Photography School.
Flash Photo Festival on FootRobert Barrow's gravure-like "equivalencies" at Portage and Main Press.
Flash Photo Festival on FootCheryl Hnatiuk's clean spare photos at the Free Press News Cafe.
Flash Photo Festival on FootJohn Paskievich, the great documentary photog, at Neechi Foods. Nunavut 1988
Flash Photo Festival on FootJohn Paskievich, the great documentary photog, at Neechi Foods.
Flash Photo Festival on FootDarcey Finley at Fox and Fiddle.
Flash Photo Festival on FootFinishing off at Fitzroy restaurant with Syn-O-Nym show on view.
Flash Photo Festival on FootAt Fitzroy's, my last pit stop before home. Boneshaker IPA and chunky chips.
Keywords: flash photography festival, photography, psychogeography, walk, winnipeg
I think flash photography is great. It can be used to make portraits and it can also help you get your subject's attention. If you are taking a photo of someone and they aren't looking at the camera, use a flash. I have no problem with flash photography in general, but I do have a problem with using it in places where there are other people who may be uncomfortable with it, such as a concert or a movie theater. I think it's fine to take photos in those circumstances because most people will understand what you're doing and not be offended by it.
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