Black Sea coastline Batumi Photodays fest will celebrate established, new photographers

French-based Italian photographer Dorian Teti will be featured in one of three personal displays during the festival days. Photo: Dorian Teti., 16 Aug 2019 - 18:04, Tbilisi,Georgia

A three-day celebration of photography will launch on Georgia’s Black Sea coast later this month, when the Batumi Photodays festival brings established photographers and emerging creatives from Georgia and abroad to the city.


Organisers of the annual show will bring over 30 artists from around the world to Batumi’s Contemporary Art Space venue for the principal display titled Mirror Land, while a photo lab workshop, three exhibitions by celebrated creatives and nighttime screenings rounding off the programme.


Opening on August 30, the festival will host its main exhibition with a theme of warped reality, false values and influence of fake news and political events on social consciousness and perception.



[The display explores the] double standards that our society share with the false structures, lost and messed up meanings and values [that] come across with the traditions and established rules,” a preview for the exhibition said.



Works by 31 artists from the Black Sea region, Europe and beyond will be exhibited, highlighting personal experiences of the creatives and connecting them to the festival theme.


Designed to support emerging artists in developing their ideas, the Photo Lab platform will open the same day in the seaside location. It will involve project pitching for selected participants with their mentors, with the winner to be revealed on the final day.


Mentors for the platform are visual artist and art critic Manfred Bator, documentary photographers Yusuke Hishida and Dina Oganova, Jeauk Lucas Kang, founder and manager of the Suwon International Photo Festival and Sabine Seitz, Managing Director of Fotografie Forum Frankfurt.


Georgian photographer Lasha “Fox” Tsertsvadze and French-based Italian creative Dorian Teti will bring their own work, centred around personal experiences and intimate moments, to viewers the following day.


In The Visit, Teti explores family, memory and identity, among other subjects, seeing the project as a look at search and alienation. Tsertsvadze — who will display his project titled Giorgi at the festival — is known for taking similarly personal and intimate subjects for his photographic work, focusing on youth and social circumstances surrounding them.



Photographs from the project border |korea by Yusuke Hishida. Photo: Yusuke Hishida.


Photographer Dina Oganova will curate works for both exhibitions, before the Photodays event sets the stage for the third personal show, in which Tokyo-based Yusuke Hishida presents his work under the title border |korea. Curated by Jeauk Kang the photographs will be displayed at the K2 cafe in the city.


All three days of the festival will also feature nighttime screenings at the Contemporary Art Space and the K2 location. 


Founded in 2015 as a joint event of Ukrainian and Georgian organisers, Batumi Photodays was originally held as part of Odessa/Batumi Photo Days festival, before a new format saw the two events held separately starting in 2018.


Organisers see the festival’s task in focusing “on a small but professional scale, to create a unique alternative platform for artistic practice and future development.”


This year’s Batumi Photodays will run between August 30-September 1.