Bristol Photo Festival has been developed over the last 18 months by a team of UK based individuals whose roles within the photography sector are wide reaching and significant. Developed with partners from across the city, the region, nationally and internationally the team have worked together to produce an exciting, impactful and high quality first edition programme of photography.
Chair/Development Director- Rudi Thoemmes
German born Bristol based publisher and bookseller Rudi Thoemmes specialises in Documentary photography, his recent publications by his company, RRB Photobooks, include Peter Mitchell, Krass Clement, Marketa Luskacova, Ken Grant among others. Apart from publishing, Rudi also represents Amak Mahmoodian, Peter Mitchell and John Myers. He is also involved as a Trustee/Director with several photography organisations in the city.
Festival Director – Tracy Marshall
Tracy Marshall is an Arts Director & Producer specialising in the production of photography exhibitions, festivals, education projects and workshops. She is Director of Northern Narratives- the non-venue-based photography production company- and previously was Development Director at Open Eye Gallery and directed their biannual LOOK Photo festival and Belfast Exposed Gallery. Tracy has previously been Director of Development for a number of international Arts organisations covering the development of work for classical music, visual arts and literature. Prior to this she had also been a Director of Campaigns for health, social welfare and education charities across UK & Ireland.
Education and Engagement Director – Alejandro Acin
Alejandro Acín is director of IC Visual Lab, an artist-led organization based in Bristol (UK) focused in disseminating photography across audiences through a regular programme of collaborative projects, educational activities and public events. In 2016, he founded ICVL Studio where he collaborates with other artists and organizations as a designer and art director in printed and digital publishing projects. He has extensive experience working with various archival institutions delivering creative engagement and educational projects using sound, film and photography.
Press Manager – Eleanor McNair
Eleanor McNair works in Freelance Press and Communications services for organisations specialising in photography. Her clients include GOST Books, Magnum Photos, Martin Parr Foundation, Huxley-Parlour Gallery and RRB Photobooks. She has worked previously for National Portrait Gallery, Photo Vogue Festival 2017, 2018 and 2019, FORMAT Festival 2017, Phaidon, Amanasalto / IMA, Atlas Gallery, Powerhouse Books, Future Artefacts 2015, Unicorn Press, Grimaldi Gavin Gallery, and WaterAid.
Gary is Director of Arnolfini- Bristol’s International Centre for Contemporary Arts. He has held several cultural and third sector leadership positions across cities in the UK and in Melbourne, Australia. He also has various non -executive positions including Chair of the Leach Pottery in St Ives Cornwall. He is committed to the important role that cultural institutions have in place making, economic change and city distinctiveness.
Amak is a contemporary Persian artist, born in Shiraz, but currently based in Bristol. Her work questions Western notions of identity, expressing personal stories that pertain to wider social issues which draws on her experiences in the Middle East, Asia and the West. Her body of work Shenasnameh was published as a book, in 2016 and has since been shortlisted for a number of awards- Time magazine 2016 & Best Author Book Award, Rencontres Arles 2016. In addition, the work has been widely exhibited internationally, at Belfast Exposed Gallery, NI (2017), Umetnostna Galerija, Slovenia and at the Photographic Centre Northwest, Seattle, USA (2018). Her latest work Zanjir has been published as a book by IC Visual Labs and RRB Photobooks in 2019 and exhibited in January 2020 in Arnolfini, Bristol. Amak is senior lecturer in photography at UWE.
Becky is the Senior Officer for Programming for the Culture & Creative Industries team within Bristol City Council. She is responsible for managing the exhibitions, events and family programme across some of the city’s major museums which include M Shed and Bristol Museum & Art Gallery. Becky has managed the delivery of numerous museum projects including Roman Empire Power & People with the British Museum, the artist Jeremy Deller’s Venice Biennale exhibition English Magic to Bristol Music: Seven Decades of Sound an immersive experience that celebrated the city’s music scene
At the core of Bristol Photo Festival is our collaborations and our partnerships, which have been key to the development and roll out of the festival. Our partners:
Arnolfini | British Culture Archive | Bristol Archives | Bristol Galleries & Museums | Firecracker | IC Visual Lab | James Hyman | Martin Parr Foundation | Multistory | RRB Publishing | Royal Photographic Society | St. Pauls Community Darkrooms | The Real Photographic Company | Royal West Academy | Spike Island | University of the West England | Watershed | Wellspring Settlement