FotoFreo 2012: The City of Fremantle Festival of Photography is well and truly over.
FotoFre 2012 consisted of a series of photographic exhibitions (the Core Exhibitions) curated by FotoFreo Inc. in dedicated venues which include the Fremantle Arts Centre, the Western Australian Maritime Museum, the Moores Building Contemporary Art Gallery, the Fremantle Prison and a number of commercial art galleries. The Festival also hosted audio visual projections, panel discussions, floor talks, book launches, portfolio reviews and a number of workshops, including three run by photographers from Magnum Photos.
Most of the events that involve visiting photographers and speakers took place during the first 10 days of the month long Festival period.
Following on from the 2008 and 2010 Festivals, FotoFreo again commissioned new photographic projects for the 2012 event and these included a major commission undertaken by Martin Parr, in which he visited and photographed in Broome, Port Hedland, and Fremantle, and a commission by W.A. photographer Bo Wong who investigated the Fremantle Market, a local destination icon.
A major focus of FotoFreo 2012 was photography from India. The programme featured a solo exhibition of the work of Raghu Rai, showing at the WAMM on Victoria Quay, together with a group exhibition of six photographers (including Bharat Sikka, Dileep Prakash, Ketaki Sheth, Gauri Gill, Vidura Jang Bahadur and N Pushpamala), curated by Devik Daulet-Singh at the Fremantle Arts Centre.
An audio visual projection involving 20 emerging and mid-career Indian photographers curated by Sohrab Hura was also commissioned for the Festival and shown during the panel discussion on Indian photography.
A major new initiative, set to become a regular feature of ongoing FotoFreo festivals, was the FutureGen project showing the work of the best graduating photographers from Australian photography courses and involving an exchange with China and the Pingyao Festival where a similar project involving more than 50 Chinese universities was undertaken.
The Festival also conducted a photo competition, entitled WA Life, with a prize pool of $10,000 and a first prize of $5,000 in cash. This too is set to become a regular FotoFreo event.
The call for submissions in the Open Exhibition programme, otherwise known as the FotoFreo Fringe, was a great success with over 220 submissions received.
FotoFreo Inc. is an incorporated non-profit association, established as a community based organisation for the purpose of organising and running the FotoFreo Festival of Photography in the port city of Fremantle, Western Australia.