Every two years since 2008, the LUMIX Festival for Young Visual Journalism has welcomed 40,000 visitors to the former Expo grounds in Hanover to engage with current positions and tendencies in visual journalism and documentary storytelling. Right from the start, the festival has been organised by the Photojournalism and Documentary Photography programme at Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts in collaboration with the Freelens photographers’ association and the Panasonic electronics corporation, which was the principal sponsor.
It is with great regret that the hosts of the festival must now share the news that the LUMIX Festival for Young Visual Journalism must be cancelled indefinitely as the namesake and principal sponsor, Panasonic, must unfortunately withdraw its sponsorship after nearly 15 years together. Unfavourable market conditions, including more than two years of a global pandemic, and continual increases to the cost of raw materials, energy and logistics make long-term planning extremely difficult, as does inflation, which has prompted consumers to save.
“Over the past years together, with great personal commitment, we have created a platform for international exchange and mutual inspiration. This platform has, among other things, made a significant contribution to motivating young visual journalists and professionalising visual journalism in general. We can all be proud of that. Our regret is all the greater that for the first time, we will not be able to support the 8th event planned for summer 2023”, states Michael Langbehn, European Manager PR Consumer Electronics at Panasonic, who was personally involved in developing the idea of the festival.
The Photojournalism and Documentary Photography programme at Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts has lost its main sponsor, which provided the lion’s share of the funding for the festival, and is thus not currently in a position to proceed with the 2023 event.
“The constant growth in local and international interest in the festival demonstrates that since its inception, our idea of making the issues of visual journalism accessible to a broad audience was the correct path to follow. For Hanover, the festival has been an important catalyst; moreover, it has conveyed a sense of identity to countless students and photography enthusiasts. Therefore, we believe it is of the utmost importance, even beyond the university programme, to initiate debate and questions concerning the role of visual journalism in our society and to work on formats to continue with our commitment”, say Christoph Bangert, Tobias Eineder and Karen Fromm, festival organisers.
We would like to thank all partners who have accompanied us, the numerous visitors and especially the students and alumni of the Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts, who have made the Lumix Festival what it is: a place where photo enthusiasts from all over world can meet.
Thank you very much!