Festival of Political Photography is a multidisciplinary event dedicated to politically conscious photography that encourages photographers, artists, researchers, and the general public to engage actively in social debate and make their voices heard on key issues facing our society. The Greek concept of politikos proceeds from the people – the word means 'for, of, or related to citizens' – and the festival echoes this. It issues a call to pay attention to the various networks of influence at individual-level, national, and global scale. The festival asks: How is our understanding of the world shaped by photographs? How can we use photographs to challenge the way we look at the world and how we see both things and the structures connecting them?
The festival programme features both the visual component, with exhibitions of photographic and multi-art-form projects, and a discussion programme. Long-term commitment and dedicated research, in particular, is emphasised in the individual projects. From 2019 onward, Festival of Political Photography will actively develop its role as a producer of multidisciplinary research in which photography is employed as a tool for visual research.
Festival of Political Photography is committed to promoting goals of sustainable social and cultural development. The festival expresses a particularly strong wish to draw attention to those photographers for whose work active social participation is central and to images that challenge the viewer's moral compass, ways of thinking, and values. All photographers and researchers participating in the festival, whatever their place of residence, take an international approach and together represent numerous cultural backgrounds. Special attention has been paid also to gender equality in development of the festival activities.
Festival of Political Photography is organised by the association Poliittisen valokuvan festivaali ry. The association members are photographic artist Sanni Seppo; Professor Anna-Kaisa Rastenberger, of the Academy of Fine Arts; Tiina Rauhala, who is a curator for the Finnish Museum of Photography; producer Ulla Kallakivi and producer and educational curator Laura Porola.
The following people have participated in PVF's discussion events and performances in 2014–2021: Maryan Abdulkarim, Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Ismo Alanko, Katju Aro, Arthur Bondar, Stefan Bremer, Roxana Crisólogo, Maria Gallen-Kallela, Laura Gustafsson, Joanna Haartti, Antti Haataja, Katriina Haikala, Laura Halonen, Elina Heikka, Iiris Heikka, Ulla Heikkilä, Hanna Heinonen, Susanna Helke, Minna Henriksson, Jari Hietanen, Veronika Honkasalo, Sara Hornig, Massoud Hossaini, Heidi Hänninen, Kaisa Ilmonen, Risto Isomäki, Jussi Jaakonaho, Johannes Jauhiainen, Helena Kahiluoto, Otso Kantokorpi, Marie Kajava, Otto Karvonen, Ville Keynäs, Neea Kilkki, Mai Kivelä, Jussi Kivi, Anu Koivunen, Outi Korhonen, Timo Korpi, Harro Koskinen, Ritva Kovalainen, Anna Kuokkanen, Susanna Kuparinen, Tuomas Kurttila, Ella Lahdenmäki, Veikka Lahtinen, Menna Lhebib, Tuomas Linna, Jani Leinonen, Minna Lyytikäinen, Lauri Maijala, Teemu Matinpuro, Vilma Metteri, Samid Mohamed, Kristo Muurimaa, Timo ”Timppa” Mäkelä, Hende Nieminen, Itohan Okundaye, Alejandro Olarte, Oskari Onninen, Paleface (Karri Miettinen), Nelli Palomäki, Sami Parkkinen, Panu Pihkala, Miikka Pirinen, Enne Purovaara, Harri Pälviranta, Johanna Rojola, Laura Ruohonen, Perttu Saksa, Leena Saraste, Maija Savolainen, Anna Shefl, Tuija Siltamäki, Joonas Snellman, Juha Suonpää, Jari Tamminen, Kimmo Tiilikainen, Pekka Turunen, Henri Tuulasjärvi, Adolfo Vera, Magi Viljanen, Markus Vinnari, Annamari Vänskä, Marcus Walsh, Hanna Weselius, Timo Wright, Hanna Yli-Tepsa ja Esa Ylijääskö.
Supporters and partners 2014–2021
Supporters and partners of Festival of Political Photography 2014–2021: The Finnish Cultural Foundation, The Finnish Museum of Photography, City of Helsinki, Patricia Seppälä Foundation, Saastamoinen Foundation, Svenska kulturfonden, Kone Foundation, Academy of Fine Arts of the University of the Arts Helsinki, Co-operative Tradeka, Alfred Kordelin Foundation, Kunstventures, The Finnish Cultural Institute in Madrid, ProHelvetia, Helsinki Region Ornithological Society Tringa, Pro Av Saarikko, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Voima, Värinä and The Finnish Association for Nature Conservation.