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The 8th International Photography Festival Organ Vida ‡ Zagreb, September 13 – 24, 2016

OPENING WEEK September 13 – 17, 2016

EXHIBITIONS September 13 – 24, 2016


The International Photography Festival Organ Vida (Zagreb, September 13 – 26, 2016) is the largest festival of contemporary photography in South Eastern Europe. Every year in September Organ Vida becomes the meeting point of photographers and artists, professionals and experts, at several different local galleries and institutions of the city of Zagreb. This year’s festival theme Revelations delves into the heart of the politics of viewpoints, and opens the discussion about the process of disciplining both the subjects as well as the viewers, whose viewpoints are formed by their own expectations and reactions. Motivated by the assumption that the viewers have a right to be informed about topics of public importance, we want to explore the way in which authors use photography as a medium through which they inspire the viewers to face the unknown, unrecorded and unspoken transformational and everyday experiences, their own destinies and destinies of other people, social and personal fights or life realizations.


Organ Vida is an independent and free festival, organized by a creative team of young professionals whose aim is to promote Croatian and international new and established photographers, and to reflect on the role of photography as a medium in a broad social context through the presentation of works which transmit relevant stories from all over the world and which can inspire the viewers to critically reflect on their everyday lives. The organization board of the Organ Vida festival is proud and immensely satisfied to present the 8th edition of the festival, until now the most far-reaching and colorful in program. The program includes exhibitions, educations, discussions and entertainment.


Out of more than 400 submissions from 58 countries, our jury selected 10 finalists who will present their works at the main festival exhibition at the French Pavilion: Kiril Golovchenko (Germany), Gidon Levin (Israel), Maria Sturm (Germany), Anne Müchler (Germany), Mario Brand (Germany), Qian Zhao (USA), Andrea i Magda Micelli (Italy/France), M. Scott Brauer (USA), Michal Siarek (Poland), and Pierre Liebaert (Belgium). This year’s selection of projects is versatile. Although most projects are exploratory works which use a documentary-conceptual approach, the final selection reflects various ways of contemplating the notion of revelations by exploring different subject matters and using different approaches.


The finalists were selected by a jury composed of Croatian and international renowned and prize-winning photographers and curators, who will be present in person at the festival: Louise Clements (UK), Lea Vene (Croatia), Simon Norfolk (UK), Phillip Toledano (USA), Donald Weber (Canada), and Gillian Wearing (UK).


Apart from the works of the ten finalists, the Organ Vida festival will present ten additional, especially commended projects at night screenings in front of the French Pavilion.


The festival is the meeting point of international artists and experts in photography, who will be presented in the program through lectures, presentations, panels, workshops, and discussions at the exhibitions. Other events include book presentations and signings, portfolio overviews, as well as accompanying film and music programs.


As part of our film program, we recommend you the Croatian premiere of the documentary film about one of the most controversial photographers in history, whose provocative works earned him the title of a key figure in 20th century photography – Robert Mapplethorpe. The documentary film Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures (2016) will be shown at the Dokukino KIC cinema on September 16, 18, 23 and 24 at 9 pm.





1. Otkrivanja/Revelations – the works of the finalists

September 13 – 24, 2016 │French Pavilion

Out of more than 400 submissions from 58 countries, our jury selected 10 finalists who will present their works at the main festival exhibition.
Curator: Lea Vene


2. Lessons from ’91

September 12 – 24, 2016 │Zvonimir Gallery

The exhibition presents the course of war in the former Yugoslavia mainly through photographs by authors from Slovenia, Croatia, BiH and Serbia, and by a few international photographers.

Curator: Sandra Vitaljić


3. 1%: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality

September 14 – 20, 2016 │ Pikto Gallery

A world- traveling group exhibition which is exploring the theme of wealth inequality. It is intended as a response to the exploding gap between poverty and wealth in the world. Documentary photographs of numerous famous photographers are stimulating the debate on the phenomenon of the richest 1 % of the world’s population who own almost half of the total world’s wealth and assets.

Curator: Myles Little


4. Fotobookfestival Kassel: Dummy Photobook Exhibition

September 12 – 21, 2016 │Oris – House of Architecture

The exhibition of the works of the Dummy Award Kassel 2016 winners:

Mathiem Asselin: Monsanto:  – A Photographic Investigation

Hiroshi Okamoto: Recruit

Zhang Lijie: Midnight Tweedle


5. Nikola Zelmanović: Here and Now

September 12 – 19, 2016 │Šira Gallery

Here and Now is the project of a photographer from Zagreb, Nikola Zelmanović. It is a journey which seeks reevaluation, a journey towards the unknown depths of our thoughts.


6. Past is Now

September 14 – 24, 2016 │ Croatian Museum of Architecture

In dialogue with the partner region Ex Yugoslavia (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia), FotoDoks 2015 examines the status quo and the potential of the past within the present. The documentary approach of this year’s exhibition finds various ways to explore the theme Past is Now.


7. What’s This Book?

September 12 – 18, 2016 │Greta Gallery

Eclectic at heart, the exhibition will display around twenty-five photo books. It will be accompanied by a showcase of prints and audiovisual material. Though the show should not be considered a definitive and axiomatic catalogue, but rather a personal and subjective selection of favorites, its intention is to highlight a wide array of approaches, philosophies and practices in the area of international photo book production.

Curator: Natasha Christia


8. Phillip Toledano: Maybe

September 15 – 24, 2016 │Kranjčar Gallery

The project Maybe is a response to the sudden death of the author’s mother in 2006. Having become aware of the unpredictability of life, Toledano uses his project to face his own fears of death and aging through the creation of the photographs of the “future version” of himself.


9. Roger Ballen: Shadow Land

September 6 – 22, 2016 │11 am – 18 pm │Museum of Contemporary Art

In the selected photography works of Roger Ballen, one of the most prominent and influential photographers of the 20th century, fantasy and reality are intertwined. The author incorporates into his photography random found objects, his own drawings, collages and sculptures, thus creating unique and extraordinary works of art which refuse to be interpreted in just one single way.

Curator: Leila Topić


The Organ Vida festival is supported by the Ministry of Culture, the City Office of Education and Sports of the City of Zagreb, and the Zagreb Tourist Board.