Photo event gets 180,000 visitors

FotoFocus, the Cincinnati-based nonprofit dedicated to championing photography and lens-based art, said it welcomed over 180,000 visitors to its exhibitions and events across Greater Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky, Dayton, and Columbus between October 2022 and early 2023.

FotoFocus’ 2022 Biennial featured a record number of nearly 800 artists, curators and participants, and united the region by examining the relationship between lens-based art and the ever-changing world.

Over 100 projects revolved around the theme “World Record,” which explored photography’s extensive record of life on earth, humankind’s impact on the natural world and the choices now faced as a global community.

The month-long photography celebration opened with the Biennial Program Week from Sept. 29–Oct. 8, which featured screenings, panel discussions, keynote lectures, talks and other events in Cincinnati.

Visitors at the Carnegie exhibition, These Things Are Connected

These programs gathered key contemporary art and film figures, such as Jason Allen-Paisant, Makeda Best, Mitch Epstein, Cheryl Finley, Dara Friedman, Ariel Goldberg, Myra Greene, Baseera Khan, Jeff Orlowski-Yang, Xaviera Simmons, Ian Strange and Deborah Willis.

Attendance figures have been collected from the 90 participating venues, including the Cincinnati Art Museum, Contemporary Arts Center, Taft Museum of Art, 21c Museum Hotel, The Carnegie, Art Academy of Cincinnati and more, making this the largest collaboration in FotoFocus history.

“We are incredibly proud to have presented our largest biennial to date, both in the amount of collaborating venues and participants,” said Katherine Ryckman Siegwarth, FotoFocus executive director. “The significance of lens-based art within the community is clear, and FotoFocus was thrilled to present a range of projects demonstrating photography’s ability to shift perceptions and see the world in a new light.”

FotoFocus will soon welcome renowned Indigenous artist and filmmaker Sky Hopinka to Cincinnati for the organization’s lecture and visiting artist series. His lecture is free and open to the public and will take place at the Cincinnati Art Museum on March 2 at 7 p.m.

The seventh FotoFocus Biennial will take place in October 2024.

Since 2010, FotoFocus has engaged art and educational institutions throughout the region to support and expand the cultural dialogue around the photography medium. FotoFocus has collaborated with organizations, curators, academics and more than 2600 artists and participants to present over 750 exhibitions and programs. FotoFocus has awarded close to 700 grants to support partners presenting projects and educational programs.