Ways of looking: a festival with young history but great artistic value

In 2011Bradford in England decided to pay tribute to photographic art. That year “Ways of looking” photography festival was established. 

The location chosen for this yearly event was a small English town with long history. Bradford city center’s cozy atmosphere stimulates thinking about photography with meaning.

Hilda of Whitby, a Christian saint and the founding Abbess of Whitby Abbey
Hilda of Whitby, a Christian saint and the founding Abbess of Whitby Abbey

Photo arts at Ways of looking

Ways of looking is very great name for photography festival. How we perceive event depends on how it is captured by camera. Photography is visual art. We look at photos and perceive author’s understanding of events, places.

Photographs presented in Bradford are characterized by profound meaning. They tell about politics, arts, daily problems and beauty of human being.

  • They aim to show Reality. Back in 2011 the very first theme of festival was called Evidence. The most famous pieces displayed were by Donovan Wylie. He presented photos from Afghanistan. They are true evidences of historical moment.
  • They interact with other types of art. Festival’s pieces include installations, modern technological devices. They complete the meaning of exhibitions’ themes.

What guarantees festival’s success?

Immediately the festival gained national and international recognition. What guaranteed it?

  • Great managerial practices. There is no one single curator responsible. On contrary there are several.
  • Festival has long-term partners. Impressions Gallery in Bradford is one of the most reliable ones.
  • The festival completes many functions. It aims to educate people. During it lectures, film screenings are proposed. Many events are free. It gives an opportunity for everyone to enjoy fine photography.

Ways of looking: to discover extraordinary photographers

Ways of looking discovered new talents. It gathered extraordinary masters of photography. Even the first festival events attracted much public attention.

  • ‘Evidence’ presented realistic photography of Donovan Wylie. In 2011 he showed his famous works dedicated to the war of Afghanistan. It left unforgivable impressions in the memory of visitors. His photography explicitly showed the ruining power of war. The works talked about devastation, hopelessness, human victims. It showed people’s dependence on dictatorship regime and belief in fight.
  • Another famous photographer Red Sanders presented new techniques. His tableaux vivants were much discussed in press. Author’s ‘Evidence’ was peasants’ history in England. Sanders showed the value of simple farm workers in process of state formation. Their daily work and lives were shown in installations 6 meters high. That beautiful collection was presented later at Impressions museum.
In this scene, hooded farm workers emerge from the rushes to act against repressive landlord farmers during the Swing Riots of 1830. The Hidden exhibition runs from 28 September to 10 December.
Hooded farm workers

Ways of looking is the festival that celebrates life. It aims to show both tragedy and beauty. Along its history it discovered new photographers. It consolidated efforts to make the photographic industry stronger and more productive. Learn the history through photography! Discover new places, unknown faces and lands. 

Join yearly events in English Bradford! Get inspired by fine realistic photography and extraordinary artists!