Noorderlicht International Photofestival: Terra Cognita
Museum Belvédère – Main location
Oranje Nassaulaan 12
8448 MT Heerenveen-Oranjewoud
T: +0031 (0)513 – 644 999
Terra Cognita, the 19th edition of the International Noorderlicht Photofestival Friesland, on the 2nd of September till the 7th of October 2012.
From more or less 1,700 entries from 83 different countries, Noorderlicht invited 115 photographers to give shape to Terra Cognita. Without losing Noorderlicht’s important social engagement, it has become an exhibition where the play of imagination can run freely.
A very striking part of the exhibition is the artistic field in which the artists and photographers find themselves. On the one hand there is the pure and unmanipulated photography. On the other hand we see new photography, which is influenced by the technical innovations and possibilities of modern times. Where, in the latter case, the camera is sometimes not even used anymore. Where Noorderlicht gives a stage to this new kind of photography art, it definitely shows, with great respect, the raw beauty of the old craft of analogue photography. In Terra Cognita both arts are equal.
The influences and know-how photographers use is clearly not just from within the photography field. A lot of the work shown at Noorderlicht is quoted from the old art of classic paintings. Photographers steal the trees from the respected masters, to use them in their present-day landscapes: romantic principles in a modern context. But at the same time, the photographers respond to the reality and the future dreams of our information society.
This year’s exhibition shows the strength and uniqueness of the medium of photography in a context of present, past and future. Of all the participating photographers, 37% are female, which is a particularly high percentage compared to earlier years.
The main location of Museum Belvedere on the Oranjewoud Estate – the beautiful backyard of Heerenveen – has been a great inspiration for this year’s theme, Terra Cognita. The quantity of entries by photographers from all over the world demonstrated that the relevance of this topic was even greater than expected.
You will find yourself spending quite a lot of time viewing the exhibitions of Terra Cognita in Museum Belvedere, Museum van Haren (both in Heerenveen), Museum Dr8888 (Drachten) and the Blokhuispoort (Leeuwarden). Visitors can also explore little old Frisian churches and galleries of the Satellite programme, the Sunday afternoon lectures in Museum Belvedere or the film programme in Museum Dr8888. There will be bus and bike tours, garden concerts, and guided tours…plenty to see and do for an entire weekend.