Fotograf Magazine

Discussion Forum Parallel Formats

10th Anniversary of Fotograf Magazine

Cinema 35, the French Institute in Prague, Štěpánská 35, Prague 1 
sat 20.10.2012, 1–6pm 
Simultaneous translation will be provided on site. 
moderated by: Martina Pachmanová 


The history of Fotograf magazine – whose mission is to be dedicated to photography and visual culture – reaches back to 2002. Since that time, photography has undergone significant changes. On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the founding of Fotograf magazine the editorial board has organized a discussion forum called Parallel Formats. The core themes will be “Photography in the media” and “Photography as an artistic artifact.” 

We have currently found ourselves in an epoch that is absolutely groundbreaking for photography. The present time has enabled the parallel coexistence of various appearances – “formats” of photography. The medium of photography in itself has been experiencing a peculiar schizophrenia in the last two decades. By means of its electronic form, photography has entered the virtual and computer world but, in addition, has also kept maintaining its analog chemical and material essence. Publicity media working with photography also coexists in a similar way. Besides traditional books and magazines with their traditional offset printing there are also electronic forms being shared via computer monitors – internet portals, blogs, books and so on. 

The original, fundamental shift that the internet brought along is experiencing its next rapid development through the form of social networks like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace etc. This is all creating an environment of exciting transformations during which newly forming unexpected questions about authorship, originals, stealing, plagiarism, collector‘s items, etc are arising. 
In addition to this, the voices of traditional collectors can be heard; they value authors‘ original “vintage prints,” with their manual craftsmanship. They claim that with digital products this term has already lost its meaning. Are they right? Or not? Is it even important to be dealing with this? Is the virtual version of photography a danger to the survival of photography as a collector‘s and exhibition artifact? It all makes an inspiring source for a discussion forum that will devote itself to these questions. 

Pavel Baňka, editor-in-chief of Fotograf magazine 


Panel I: Photography in the media 
The transformation of photography in the printed media. Can photography in our digital age be regarded as a viable proof that the event or phenomenon it portrays actually existed in reality? What are the problems of publishing photography in printed media? What are the problems of publishing photography in digital formats? New forms of authorship, copyright etc. in the information era. Issues regarding the freedom of self-presentation and its limits (self-publishing, blogs, websites). 


Panel II: Photography as an original 
The photographic image and its issues, between exclusive prints and zines, markets and independent cultures. How society values photography, what type of conception and why? Changes in the notion of vintage print today within the spectrum reaching from copy machine run offs to exclusive collector‘s prints? Are modern “alternative processes” still meaningful? The challenges faced by archiving and collecting contemporary print formats?

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#20 Public Art