CANCELLED: Helsinki Photomedia 2020

The theme of the 5th Helsinki Photomedia Conference in 2020 is "Images Among Us".The conference brings together international photography researchers and academics. It offers various platforms where artistic, philosophical, social, cultural, economic and technological approaches to photography meet.
HPM conference


Cancellation of Helsinki Photomedia 2020 conference

Following the latest developments of the COVID-19 epidemic, the instructions of WHO, THL and Aalto University’s updated policy, it is with heavy hearts we must inform you that Helsinki Photomedia 2020 will not be organized this year.

The small team behind the conference has been closely following the unfolding of the events since January. In the current light of events we see no other responsible way in approaching this matter than cancelling this year’s conference. The health and safety of the attendees, presenters, colleagues, and students is what we have prioritized in our decision making. Our decision comes is in line with the updated Aalto University policy not to organise events or invite any guests until 31 May 2020. We truly regret the inconveniences you may experience as a result of this decision.

We will soon be working on rescheduling the event for 2021. Concerning the rescheduling process, a more detailed announcement will be made in the near future.

Helsinki Photomedia is a biennial photography research conference organized by four Finnish universities since 2012. The first Helsinki Photomedia conference was held in 2012 to fill a void: Photography studies lacked a regular, international research forum for discussing and sharing results and ideas. This was despite the rapid transformation and diversification in photography and the recent surge in photography research all over the world.

The conference offers various platforms where artistic, philosophical, social, cultural, economical and technological approaches to photography meet. We welcome submissions from all areas of photography research. Since 2016 photography education has been one of the areas and we welcome submissions for the educational panel for presenting educational projects and related research. The conference language is English.

Images Among Us

The theme “Images Among Us” refers to the roles of photographic images in a world that is vibrant, transitory and overcharged by affects. The contours and borders of media rearrange themselves in virtual and material environments in various platforms and social spaces. The flicker of their dividing lines becomes intermittently vague and distinct. In this dense historical assemblage, the photographic image itself has become disintegrated and embedded in different media.

Evidently, the present condition is difficult to access through our customary photographic categories and thinking. Photographic images are much more than familiar mediators between the world and ourselves. They have become simultaneously comforting and threatening. Photographic operations have become more and more elusive, with photography becoming less and less reducible to its myriad uses and capacities. However, enduring ontological questions on the essence, materiality and origins of photography have become more significant than ever. For example, photographs still possess traces of the evidential currency that has defined much of photography’s history.

Helsinki Photomedia 2020 invites alternative formulations, critical observations, artistic reflections and presentations of photography projects that react to the present photographic condition in various ways, seeking to instigate productive dialogues.

This year's keynote speakers include Michelle Henning, Ben Burbridge and Adel Abidin.

Helsinki Photomedia is organised by Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture in cooperation with four Finnish Universities: University of Tampere, Faculty of Communication Sciences, University of the Arts Helsinki; Academy of Fine Arts; and University of Jyväskylä.

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