What is EMoP ?
For an in-depth description you may read the About Page. To make it short : EMoP is a network of institutions dealing with photography located in eight European capitals (Athens, Berlin, Bratislava, Budapest, Ljubljana, Luxembourg, Paris, Vienna). All institutions, their director or curators, are in charge of a Photofestival, for exemple the MdF (Monat der Fotografie) in Berlin or the Mois Europeén de la Photographie in Paris.
EMoP asbl is registered in Luxembourg as a European non -profit association. Board members come from the eight member cities. They meet about four times a year to discuss common strategies and above all decide about a common exhibition and catalogue.
What does EMoP ?
Generally speaking, an EMoP member is in charge of organizing a local photo festival. This usually implies managing a number of exhibitions, publishing a catalogue and promoting this event. The Berlin or Vienna festival director will have to manage up to 120 different exhibitions (hosted and organized by state or city institutions, private galleries or independant associations); smaller cities like Luxembourg host about 24 exhibitions. These exhibitions are independant events and not curated by the managing board. Nevertheless, among these many events, one major exhibition is directly managed by a designated curator who is member of the EMoP board. The theme of this exhibition and the artists selected are so by all members of the Emop Network. It is usually the most important exhibition and hosts the opening ceremony of the festival. These festivals are mostly biennual events and take place in 2015/2017 in Athens, Luxembourg and Ljubljana. In 2016 in Berlin, Bratislava, Budapest. Paris is an annual event.
What is an EMoP project ?
Generally speaking, an EMoP project ( exhibition, book, catalogue, workshop… ) is the result of discussions among curators representing a member city about a common topic. Every curator suggests a list of artists / topics he is interested in, he considers as good and above all fits the theme chosen. A short list is made out of all suggestions. This is just one exemple of a possible procedure. In case of an exhibition, out of a pool of artists, each city ‘s curator builds its very special exhibition in accordance with the theme. This means that some artists might be exhibited in all eight cities, some only in one. A common catalogue was always published over the last years with all the artists exhibited or selected. Past exhibitions were shown at the Martin-Gropius-Bau and the Berlinische Galerie (Berlin), MUSA (Vienna), Mudam (Museum of contemporary art Luxembourg) , Maison européenne de la photographie (MEP) in Paris.
What has to be done to become a member of EMoP ?
Generally speaking, EMoP membership is limited as of today to European capitals and its institutions or association working for a city or within a city framework. The MdF in Berlin is under control of the Berlin Senate and its culture department; the same applies for Vienna where the MUSA is a city institution. The MEP (Maison européenne de la photographie) in Paris or the Central European House of Photography in Bratislava are funded by the state or city government. Independant associations like Café-Crème asbl in Luxembourg claim a thirty year existence and have been working in close relationship with the local museums or institutions for years.They are mostly non-profit and partly supported by private sponsorship or state contributions. Several rules apply that can be found in the statutes; they can be summarized in a few words: long term engagement in the field of the arts / photography , sound finances and the possibility to host an exhibition in the best possible space in your city.
Will my institution / association get money from EMoP ?
As a matter of fact : NO. On the contrary, every city contributes to the common budget every year in order to finance its shared activities. Membership has to be seen as an opportunity to have interesting debates on a European level about the art fields, photography in particular and to curate together interesting and innovative exhibitions in the domain of photography. On the other hand, the common exhibition and catalogue allows for economies of scale that can be substantial if production costs occur that can be shared among cities. As to another economical or financial aspect, it can be said that projects aiming at European collaboration and exchange will get easier financed by local or European institutions if the opportunity occurs.
I am a photographer / artist; can I submit art to your board ?
Well, the correct answer probably is : NOT REALLY BUT… The EMoP exhibition is not an Open call exhibition if we consider the last level of decision, that is to say, when the board meets for final conclusions. Each curator of the board, in relation to the chosen topic, will suggest a number of artists of his choice he considers as the best to fit within a defined topic and this after a series of discussions with other members. At this point – and over the last ten years – the Emop network – as far as our own exhibition is concerned – did not really rely on Open Calls. But it has to be said that EMoP member cities may have Open Call procedures for the Emop exhibition and for other local exhibitions as well. Check their local website. You may as well directly send in your portfolio to a particular City board member or office (see member part of this site). This could mean that you will not be part of the EMoP show but part of the local photo festival and consequently another venue. Whether the EMoP network will back its exhibition strategy in the future on Open calls has to be seen.
What should I do to get exhibited ?
You may try to contact a photo-gallery or photo association in a member city or just look up the name of a curator of a show that fits your interests, goals and talent. To get some help, consider the local catalogue ( Berlin , Luxembourg, Paris, Vienna, .. ) where you can find all institutions ( state, private or non-profit ) participating in the festival. You may also have the opportunity to meet a member of the EMoP board during a portfolio review in one of the cities. Portfolio reviews have been (and will be) organized by Athens, Budapest, Bratislava, Ljubljana and Vienna where curators of EMoP members were invited as experts. Call up the web site of a member and look for news.
Do you contribute to production costs and more ?
Generally speaking, yes, according to budget. This means that if you are selected for the common exhibition, every city will do its best to have your pictures in size and quality to fit the curator’s goals and needs best. If you are already represented by a gallery, we will discuss this topic together to meet everybody’s interest. A member city should also provide a free stay and cover travel cost for the opening. This is of course dependant on local budgets that vary annually; but all cities have managed up to now to offer high quality exhibition space, overall good to excellent news coverage and a perfect stay.