Sun, 21.06.
New Perspectives on Documentary Practices

at Lumix Festival

The topic “New Perspectives on Documentary Practices” will reflect on the changing role of journalistic photography in today’s world. In particular, it examines current tendencies in visual-journalistic storytelling and the development of visual narrations that subvert the traditional viewing habits, expectations and stereotyping of classical documentary photographic narrative forms. With “New Perspectives on Documentary Practices” the LUMIX Festival in cooperation with [IMAGE MATTERS] establishes a regular platform, that focuses on possibilities and strategies in the field of tension between art, journalism and documentation. For this year’s festival, Dutch curator Iris Sikking has made a selection of 12 projects.

Platform New Perspectives on Documentary Practices

Originally planned as a complementary exhibition to the competition programme, the format “New Perspectives on Documentary Practices” is intended to provide a space for examining current developments in the field of documentary photography and visual-journalistic narration. It deepens the work of [IMAGE MATTERS], a platform for discussion about issues in photographic practice and theory, which was created in the Photojournalism and Documentary Photography programme at Hanover’s University of Applied Sciences and Arts.

This year’s guest curator is Iris Sikking, independent curator, lecturer and author from Amsterdam. She co-edited the volume “Why Exhibit? Positions in Exhibiting Photographies” (FW:books). In 2018 she acted as the chief curator of the Krakow Photomonth and compiled the main program “Space of Flows: Framing an Unseen Reality”. And recently she curated the “Futures Talents” exhibition for Unseen Foundation in collaboration with Melkweg Expo, Amsterdam.

Categorized into 4 strategies, she presents a selection of 12 works that have their origins in journalistic photography, but explicitly challenge its boundaries and possibilities in both media and narrative.

Image: Lisa Barnard, from the work “The Canary and the Hammer”.


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How to position oneself in a fragmented world? LIVE TALK: Iris Sikking in conversation with Lisa Barnard and Robert Knoth

Guest curator Iris Sikking with Lisa Barnard and Robert Knoth, two of the selected artists. Both have been eager to break out of the photojournalistic realm through their careers, and found their own visual approach in producing, conceptualising and disseminating their projects. Lisa Barnard and Robert Knoth will talk about the choices they made for the presentation platforms and the value of indepth research. Together with Iris Sikking they will discuss the tension between the hyper reality of journalism and the more abstract qualities of art and literature, which requires a self-reflexive documentary approach.

Amak Mahmoodian, from the work “Zanjir”. Courtesy RRB Photobooks / IC-Visual Lab.

Laura Ben Hayoun, from the work “A la moindre étincelle, c’était l’explosion”.

Lumix Festival Podcast Booklaunch of the new publication by [IMAGE MATTERS] / Alexandra Baumgartner

Under the title “image/con/text. Dokumentarische Praktiken zwischen Kunst, Journalismus und Aktivismus” (Reimer), the second book by [IMAGE MATTERS] is published, edited by Karen Fromm, Sophia Greiff, Malte Radtki and Anna Stemmler.

In the Lumix Festival Podcast, the editors will talk about how current narrative forms open up new perspectives for the field of photojournalism and documentary photography. Focusing beyond the limits of a conventional understanding of the documentary form, the projects presented in this publication emphasize the contextuality of photography and show that meaning can only be revealed in the complex interplay of images, texts and documents. They interweave fact and fiction and trace constellations of power in the process of representation.

The second guest, Alexandra Baumgartner, who is represented in the exhibition “New Perspectives on Documentary Practices”, talks about her project “How like a leaf I am”. In her work, the Swiss artist does not limit herself to photographic means alone, but also actively involves the viewers via installations and participatory elements.

The podcast is available in German language.

Alexandra Baumgartner, from the work “How like a leaf I am”.


Under the title [IMAGE MATTERS], the Photojournalism and Documentary Photography programme at Hanover’s University of Applied Sciences and Arts has created a platform for discussion about issues in photographic practice, discourse in the theory of image and photography as well as in visual and cultural studies. This dialogue will open up important new perspectives for both sides.

[IMAGE MATTERS] will encourage photographic discussion, host workshops and symposia and develop publications aimed at students and a specialised audience from the areas of practice, theory and research.