The European Month of photography Festival in Luxembourg (emoplux) is a major international festival dedicated to photography and visual culture. Through its programming, and thanks to the participation of near all art institutions of the country the Festival is committed to offering a diversified and international platform for the exchange of ideas, artistic expression and engagement with photography in all its forms.
The Festival brings together emerging as well as established artists and photographers mainly from Europe with the aim to reflect the diversity of photography of our time.
Exploring a variety of cultural, artistic, social, and political perspectives, the Festival considers a large spectrum of photographic media, ranging from fine art, conceptual and documentary photography up to other media, including video and installations. In addition to three exhibitions directly curated by the association ( MNHA, Cercle, Arendt House ) the core of the Festival is a multi-layered program, including moments of curatorial exchange and development opportunities.
Emoplux 2023 will take place in May and June in about 20 locations across the country, mainly in the capital but also in Clervaux, Dudelange, Ettelbrück and the neighbouring city of Trier (Germany). The Festival will also offer an opportunity for young emerging artist to have their portfolio reviewed in front of major museum directors, curators or festival managers. The Festival is accepting proposals until 15 March 2023.
The theme of “Rethinking Identity” has been chosen by the curators of this 9th edition of EMOP as a continuation of the “Rethinking…” trilogy, which began with “Rethinking Nature” in 2021. This edition of the trilogy will focus on the role of photography in reflecting on the issues surrounding the construction and deconstruction of identities, particularly as portrayed by social media. Gender issues will also be explored alongside broader perspectives on political, cultural, and social identities.
The theme of “Rethinking Identity” has been chosen by the curators of this 9th edition of EMOP 2023 as a continuation of the “Rethinking…” trilogy, which began with “Rethinking Nature” in 2021. This edition of the trilogy will focus on the role of photography in reflecting on the issues surrounding the construction and deconstruction of identities, particularly as portrayed by social media. Gender issues will also be explored alongside broader perspectives on political, cultural, and social identities. For the Arendt award the following artists dealing with this topic have been nominated :Cihan Cakmak, Ulla Deventer,Karolina Wojtas, Livia Melzi, Jojo Gronostay.
emop award by arendt
Since 2012 the Luxembourg based law firm Arendt & Medernach with offices in Dubai, Hong Kong, London, Moscow and New York has been supporting our association. It considerably contributed to develop a taste for photography and contemporary art in general.
Every second year, the law firm Arendt & Medernach awards a visual artist who is part of the common exhibitions curated by the Emop network throughout Europe.
Arendt & Medernach has a passion for contemporary art. For several years, the firm has been engaged in the art of photography by exhibiting artists from all over the world in its premises located in Kirchberg, Luxembourg. Works by well-known artists such as David La Chapelle, Beat Streuli, Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Candida Höfer, Günther Förg, and Valérie Belin were exhibited alongside works by young talents. Gradually, Arendt & Medernach has built up its own art collection, which is representative of the main currents in contemporary photography.
True to its passion, Arendt & Medernach wishes to encourage open-mindedness, diversity and the sharing of emotions. Therefore, it is a great pleasure for Arendt & Medernach to partner with the “European Month of Photography”.
arendt award 2023
The five artists nominated for the EMoP Arendt Award in relation to the theme of Rethinking Identity take different paths through singular reinterpretations that go beyond the classic clichés of identity.
Out of a more individual vision, Cihan Cakmak addresses the reminiscences of a Kurdish identity fracture by creating personal dreamlike situations challenging the social fragmentation and isolation she has undergone. By using the female body as an instrument of power, Ulla Deventer, throughout a particular aesthetic that draws on both photo documentation and contemporary art installation, deconstructs stereotypes about prostitution. Karolina Wojtas’ deconstructed self-representations and fragmentary perceptions of the body create new fictions that question the concepts of time and space from a social and relational perspective. In another register, Livia Melzi’s work confronts the archive and representations around identity through her research on the Tupinambá capes, from the Tupi warrior tribes of the Brazilian coast and originally used for anthropophagic rituals. The cultural identity issue is mixed with autobiographical elements in Jojo Gronostay’s (born in Germany with Ghanaian roots) multimedia work. Objects and images of objects and fragments of bodies are decontextualized and presented in unusual scales playing with the interrelations between colonialism and capitalism. These emerging artistic positions express different types of identity, whether individual, family, cultural or territorial.
EMoP jury members in 2022: Paul di Felice (president/Luxb), Emmanuelle Halkin (Paris, Fet’Art-Circulations), Verena Kaspar-Eisert (FotoWien), Rui Prata (Imago Lisboa), Maren Lübbke-Tidow (Kulturprojekte Berlin), Delphine Dumont (PhotoBrussels / Hangar).
arendt award 2021
The five artists selected display a deep interest in the complexities of the relationship between Man and nature, each one reconsidering in his or her own way the modes of representation and fictions related to nature and landscape.
Vanja Bucan‘s photographs plunge the viewer into a dreamlike, phantasmagorical universe with curiously arranged ecosystems. Inka&Niclas presents disturbed visions of landscapes that are both strange and sublime, while Danila Tkachenko‘s photographs of ruined Russian rural villages bear witness to an historical era that has vanished. Anastasia Mityukova’s and Maria-Magdalena Ianchis representations of Greenland’s icebergs and icescapes employ different forms of mental and real imagery to create installations of archives and memory which attempt to embody the “stigmata” of the Anthropocene and to fill the void left by photography’s failure to represent the complexity of nature.
EMoP jury members included Paul di Felice (president / Luxb)), Bettina Leidl (vice-president / Vienna) and committee members Emmanuelle Halkin (Paris), Verena Kaspar- Eisert (Vienna) and Rui Prata (Lisbon).
arendt award 2019
The winner of the 2019 edition is Weronika Gesicka.
The nominees for the 2019 Arendt & Medernach European Month of Photography award are: Carina Brandes (Germany), Matthieu Gafsou (Switzerland), Weronika Gesicka (Poland) Alix Marie (France), SMITH (France).
arendt award 2017
Shortlisted for the 2017 Arendt Month of photography award were: Samuel Gratacap ( first laureate ), Jure Kastelic, Aida Silvestri, Daniel Mayrit, Panos Tsagaris. The price ceremony was held on April 26th at the Arendt & Medernach premises / headquarters in Luxembourg-Kirchberg.
Each of these has investigated the political undertones of this years theme “Looking for the Clouds – Contemporary Photography in Times of Conflicts”.
The young French Samuel Gratacap is interested in problems related to migration and places of transit. His work, which is both sensitive and objective, stands at the crossroads of photojournalism and contemporary art.
The Slovenian artist Jure Kastelic also deals with the image in relation to time. The photographs of his series “Death Reporters” are taken from television stills who concentrate on the very moment the presenter announces the number of victims during catastrophic events worldwide. In this way, he deconstructs media communications strategies This is also the case in the work of Daniel Mayrit, whose hazy portraits (taken by surveillance cameras) are images of some of the most influential people in London. They contradict the “glamorous” image of these personalities, who are suddenly the target of surveillance cameras, exactly like criminals.
In the series of magazine covers entitled “For Between Light and Darkness We Stand”, the Greek artist Panos Tsagaris interrupts the flow of news by replacing it with a symbolic work reflecting what he calls “the gradual disconnection from materiality and the slow awakening of higher consciousness.”
In a completely different way, the work of Aida Silvestri, originally from Eritrea, is part of a personal and altruistic quest focused on the fate of African refugees, which she presents in the form of blurred portraits and with the traces of their routes embroidered directly onto the photographs.
Discover the 5 artists selected by Arendt for the EMOP exhibition “Looking for the Clouds” at Arendt House, and listen to them explaining their work
arendt award 2015
The 2015 laureate is Tatiana Lecomte: she will receive the “European Month of photography award”, an amount of 5,000 EUR. Her works together with the works of the other artists from the shortlist will be exhibited in the exhibition space of Arendt & Medernach’s headquarters in Luxembourg from April 22nd 2015 until September 13th.
The Jury of the “European Month of photography award 2015 ” consisted of Miha Colner (Ljubljana), Paul di Felice (Luxembourg), Gabriella Uhl (Budapest) and Frank Wagner (Berlin). Names of the preselected artists are : Marcell Esterházy, Tatiana Lecomte, Andreas Muehe, Borut Peterlin and Lina Scheynius. These 5 artists have been selected among the emerging artists of the exhibition project “Memory Lab – Photography Challenges History” curated by the eight partner cities of the “European Month of Photography“: Athens, Berlin, Bratislava, Budapest, Ljubljana, Luxembourg, Paris and Vienna.
the portfolio review
is a unique opportunity for local artists and residents of the neighbouring regions ( Germany, Belgium, France ) to introduce themselves to an international jury of experts. Unlike the classic “portfolios reviews”, a restricted number of artist – chosen by a jury – is invited to present and comment on their work in public through a Powerpoint presentation. At the end of all the presentations, the artist will take the individual opinion of each expert present who will comment on his work one-on-one.
The concept was developed by Café-Crème Asbl and the University of Luxemburg and initially managed by Cristina Dias de Magalhães within the framework of the European Month of Photography festival in 2015.
The 5th edition of the “Portfolio review” will be held on Mai 10th at the Neumunster Abbey. Proposals will be accepted until March 15th. ( see here )
We invite anyone who has a practice in the field of contemporary photography, living / working or having exhibited in Luxembourg or close regional neighbourhood, to submit their work by sending their files to “email@example.com”.
portfolio content (pdf: max 10 MB):
– CV (studies + exhibitions )
– short description of the portfolio content (in French and English or German and English )
Call for proposals (Deadline for submission of the dossier (portfolio): March 15th 2023
The selected photographers will be informed by e-mail latest on : April 10th 2023
About 10 emerging artists will present their work (in English / 10 minutes by photographer) to the general public and to six or more European experts in photography. At the end of the presentations each candidate will have the opportunity to show his work in private to any of the invited experts.
portfolio review 2021
The fourth edition of Révélation (s) / Portfolio – Plateforme – Luxembourg took place as part of the 8th European Month of Photography in Luxembourg on June 2nd, 2021 at Casino Luxembourg, contemporary art forum.
Selected artists were:Bruno Baltzer & Leonora Bisagno, Justine Blau, Marie Capesius, Lisa Kohl, Lucas Leffler, Elshan Rozafa, Caecilia Tripp, Silja Yvette.
The experts invited for this 2021 edition are: Delphine Dumont (director of Hangar, Bruxelles and Photo Brussels Festival), Christian Gattinoni (art critic and editor-in-chief of the online review www.lacritique.org), Emmanuelle Halkin (exhibition curator and head of the Circulations festival; Paris), Verena Kaspar-Eisert (curator at the KunstHaus in Vienna), Bettina Leidl ( director of Kunst Haus Vienne ), Rui Prata (director of Imagao Lisboa), Claartje van Dijk (head curator at Foam Amsterdam) as well as Anouk Wies (chief manager at Cercle Cité and exhibition curator).
Streaming available: https://www.casino-luxembourg.lu/fr/Agenda/Revelation-s-Portfolio-Plateforme
Works of the 2021 participants are to be published in the catalogue of the European Month of Photography Luxembourg in 2023 ( emoplux 2023 ).
portfolio review 2019
The third portfolio review ( 2019 edition of the European Month of Photography in Luxembourg ) Révélation(s) / Portfolio – Platform – took place on May 15th 2019 from 2-5 pm at Cercle Cité in Luxembourg.
2019 participants were:Patrick Galbats, Keven Erickson, Carole Melchior, Martine Pinnel, Véronique Kolber, Jana Hartmann, Séverine Peiffer
The following experts accepted our invitation for the 2019 edition: Thomas Licek (former director of Eyes On – Month of Photography Vienna), Verena Kaspar-Eisert (curator at Kunst Haus Vienna), Christian Gattinoni (professor at Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Photographie, Arles and art critic), Branislav Stepanek (curator at Central European House of Photography, Bratislava), Gabriela Uhl (curator and professor at the University of Budapest), Angela Ferreira (artist, curator, former director & curator of the Portuguese PhotoFestival Encontros da Imagem, Braga), Audrey Hoareau (curator, co-founder an co-director of The Red Eye) and Anouk Wies (curator, Cercle Cité).
Works of the 2019 participants were published in the catalogue of the European Month of Photography Luxembourg in 2021 ( emoplux 2021 ).
Portfolio review 2017
The 6th European Photography Month in Luxembourg hosted the second edition of Révélation (s) / Portfolio – Platform – Luxembourg. It took place on April 26th 2017 at Cercle Cité City of Luxembourg / Auditorium.
The 10 selected candidates were :
Becker Sven, Dul Krystyna, Frankle Robert, Guillaume Sylvie, Lejona Andrés, Lindström Ann Sophie, Loder Boris, Ries Raoul, Wagener Daniel
The following experts were invited for the 2017 edition: Thomas Licek, directeur de Eyes On – Monat der Fotografie Wien ; Jean-Luc Soret, curator at Maison européenne de la Photographie, Paris; Christian Gattinoni, professor at Ecole nationale supérieure de photographie, Arles art critic ; Alessandra Capodacqua, Florence, curator ; Nathalie Herschdorfer ( director of Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lelocle, Switzerland ) ; Mario Hislen, director of the Foto festival Circulation(s), Paris ; Gabriella Uhl ( Budapest ) curator and professor ( University of Budapest ).
Works of the candidates were published in the atalogue of the European Month of Photography in Luxembourg 2019 (emoplux 2019)
portfolio review 2015
Experts in 2015 were Thomas Licek, director of Eyes On and Monat der Fotografie Vienna; Frank Wagner, curator of Monat der Fotografie Berlin; Michaela Bosáková, curator at the Central European House of Photography à Bratislava; Gabriella Uhl, independent curator, University professor in Budapest and member of the advisory board of Fotohonap – Hungarian Month of Photography; Jean-Luc Soret, curator at la Maison européenne de la photographie Paris; Christian Gattinoni, professor at ENSP ( National School of Photography Arles ) and editor of lacritique.org; Rui Prata, founder and former director of Museu da Imagem, Porto.
Invited artists in 2015
Bruno Baltzer & Leonora Bisagno , Justine Blau, Laurianne Bixhain, Eric Chenal, Sebastien Cuvelier,Serge Ecker, Paul Gaffney, Carine & Elisabeth Krecké, Anna Krieps , Neckel Scholtus
The artists had their work published in the 2017 catalogue of the European Month of photography Luxembourg (emoplux 2017)
The European Month of Photography Luxembourg (Biennale) is an international festival of Photography and visual vulture organized by Café-Crème asbl since 2007 in partnership with members of EMOP asbl (European Month of Photography asbl). Directors and editors are Paul di Felice and Pierre Stiwer, main assistant is Krystyna Dul (contact: bureau@cafecreme-artlu)
Over the past 10 years, almost all of Luxembourg state and city institutions participated in the event: the Museum of Modern Art Grand-Duc Jean (Mudam), the National Museum of History and Art (MNHA), Casino Luxembourg – Forum of contemporary art, Neumünster Abbey (Centre de rencontre Neimënster), Carré-Rotondes, Cercle-Cité exhibition space, the Villa Vauban, the City Museum, the National Library, the National Archives, LUCA (Institute for architecture). Exhibition spaces belonging to the finance sector (Arendt & Medernach, BGL-Fortis, Deutsche Bank, Banque de Luxembourg, Crédit Agricole) or private galleries (Nosbaum & Reding, Fellner contemporary, Valerius, Reuter-Bausch ) are also more or less regular participants. Outside the capital, the Centre national de l’audiovisuel (CNA) in Dudelange, the town gallery Nei Liicht regularly hold exhibitions during the European Month of Photography. The city of Clervaux – hosting Edward Steichen’s Family of Man exhibition – participates with a programm of its own through its association Clervaux, Cité de l’Image. The art center of the city of Ettelbruck ( CAP ) as well as the new Konschthal Esch ( art space Esch) are occasional participants.
The European Month of Photography also periodically joins with the Arsenal exhibition space in Metz (France / Lorraine) , Beda art space of Bitburg (Germany) and most recently the Europäische Kunstakademie Trier ( Germany ).
Café-Crème asbl – founding members are Pierre Stiwer, Paul Bretz and Paul di Felice, later joined by Robert Theisen – starts as a non-profit association publishing an experimental magazine with the aim to promote young emerging talents from Luxembourg ( designers, photographers, painters, architects ) to a broader international art scene and the major players in the field of contemporary art of the eighties.
Taking advantage of the then emerging desktop publishing possibilities, the association publishes a coffee-table magazine which develops into a contemporary art magazine with a particular focus on photography after a couple of issues. It was distributed internationally in Museum shops and selected libraries in Europe as well as in the United States for a short period of time. It is the very first desktop published magazine in Luxembourg.
Café-Crème asbl is curator of a series of exhibitions at the town gallery of Dudelange ( Nei Liicht gallery ) introducing new trends in contemporary photography of Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. As a participant of Luxembourg European Capital of Culture event (1995) the association manages a major exhibition called “Landscape : about places and non-places” in collaboration with the Art Center Nei Liicht and the CNA ( Centre national de l’audiovisuel ) in Dudelange. Café-Crème will later continue the Nei Liicht partnership with individual exhibitions such as “Tempi in scena ( 2001) “ and “Tempi osceni ( 2009 ) “ (co curated with Alessandra Capodacqua, Studio Marangoni, Florence).
The town gallery of the city of Dudelange plays a major role in promoting contemporary art in Luxembourg and is a leading institution in the country for contemporary photography.
The association is among the very first to set up a website in Luxembourg (1994).
The exhibition space Casino Luxembourg – Forum d’Art Contemporain (created in 1995) – hosts in 1997 the first international show on contemporary photography in Luxembourg “The 90s – A Family of Man?” curated by Paul di Felice and Pierre Stiwer. The exhibition is to be a milestone in Luxembourg by drawing attention to the possible connections to be made between the admired Edward Steichen ( a country native ) and his Family of Man exhibition – donated to his native country by the artist – and contemporary views on the same topic.
Rineke Dijkstra, Nan Goldin, John Coplans, Christian Boltanski, Thomas Struth, Beat Streuli are part of this show among many other international artists. The previous year the association published the last issue of its magazine. Main topic is Photography after photography inspired by the text of Hubertus von Amelunxen who foresees the end of photography as we know it. Digital technology and post-modern philosophy radically change our approach to truth and the notion of avant-garde art.
During this period the Banque et Caisse d’Epargne de l’Etat ( BCEE ) is promoting actively photography and starts a collection concentrating on works of Edward Steichen as well as on contemporary photography. The association is invited to design and conceive two books: one on contemporary photographers in Luxembourg and one catalogue for the growing collection. The art space of the bank “Am Tunnel” provides an opportunity to exhibit the collection – works range from Cindy Sherman to Helmut Newton – as well as the more contemporary artist from Luxembourg.
During this period the association publishes three volumes on contemporary photography in Europe: Les Trahisons du modèle, Le Bâti et le Vivant, Apparemment léger.
The Ministry of culture provides for several years ( 2000 – 2006 ) an exhibition space to the association, the Chapelle du Rham. During this period, the association is able to develop large scale exhibitions although we rely on external staff for the handling of the works – aid is provided by neighbouring art institutions who are willing to help.
There is some hope to develop into a full scale exhibition space for contemporary art, but a scheduled renovation of the historical building as well as of the neighbouring protected Rham area stops the process.
It nevertheless proves to be an incentive to initiate a festival called Les Semaines européennes de l’image then supported by the French cultural Institute in Luxembourg and associating Christian Gattinoni who is teaching photography at the ENSP Arles (France).
The Chapelle du Rham is home to three major international exhibitions with a focus on Scandinavian, Italian and French artists mainly and hosts – together with Casino art forum – the first Emop (European Month of Photography network) exhibition, Mutations 1.
The association starts a long term curatorial project within the newly created European Month of Photography (emop) network ( a joint venture of European photography festivals in Berlin, Rome, Vienna, Moscow, later joined by Bratislava, Budapest, Ljubljana and Athens ) on different topics related to recent development in photography. Founding members are the Maison européenne de la photographie in Paris, Kulturprojekte Berlin and Musa ( Museum auf Abruf, City of Vienna. Exhibitions labeled Mutations 1, 2, 3 are showcases in the hybridization of photography and video art as well as the migration to the internet.
Building on former good relationships with local museums and institutions in Luxembourg such as Casino Art Forum, the Mudam ( Musée d’art moderne ) or Carré-Rotondes the works of major artists/photographers (Philippe Ramette, Ori Gersht, David Claerbout, Edmund Clark, Rob Hornstra …) are shown in these art spaces.
Café Crème curates in 2007 “Différences partagées” (in collaboration with Nei Liicht) within the second edition of “Luxembourg and Grande Région European Capital of Culture“ and presents, among others, in situ works by the Luxembourg based artist Marco Godinho.
The Musée national d’Art et d’Histoire and the city of Luxembourg art space ( Cercle ) becomes a major partner with exhibitions focusing on portrait and landscape photography. Exhibitions such as “DistUrbances” or “Memory Lab” address environment topics or how photography deals with memory and history.
New innovative art spaces such as the Abbaye de Neumunster provide opportunities to develop outdoor exhibition projects.
2011 – 2013:
The Casino Luxembourg continues to host thematic exhibitions such as Great Expectations – Contemporary Photography looks at today’s Bitter Years (2009 ) or Second Lives : Jeux Masqués et autres Je (2011).
During these years, the association curates as well several exhibitions for private enterprises or assists them with the necessary expertise to host exhibitions dedicated to photography or visual arts on their premises (Arendt & Medernach, BGL-Fortis, Banque de Luxembourg).
The Law firm Arendt & Medernach becomes a main partner of the association’s activities and develops a new dynamics around the Emoplux festival by suggesting the idea of a European photography award.
2014 – 2019:
The association is proud of its thirty years of regular activity and publishes an A3 magazine inspired by its first publication and text of international photo experts that have been long time companions.
Emop decides in 2015 to become a legal structure hosted in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Although the eight member cities of the emop network are experiencing the impact of a changing cultural and political environment in a tougher economic environment the eight institutions in Athens, Berlin, Bratislava, Budapest, Ljubljana, Luxembourg, Paris and Vienna pledge to continue and develop their relationship around common projects. Nevertheless Athens, Budapest, Bratislava and Ljubljana will leave the network to be replaced later by Brussels Foto Festival and Imago Lisboa of Portugal.
The city of Luxembourg becomes a main sponsor of the festival and its city exhibitions spaces such as Cercle Cité, Musée de la ville, Villa Vauban become regular participants of the photo festival Emoplux.
The association also extends its collaboration to neighbouring institutions such as the Arsenal Art center of Metz (Lorraine / France ), Haus Beda in Bitburg ( Germany ) during festival time.
The Cercle Cité premises are now hosting the portfolio review which is a public event during the photo festival. It is meant to provide to local or regional artists the opportunity to meet international experts of photography and curators of major festivals.
Taking advantage of its European connections, the association is providing exhibition opportunities for Luxembourg photographers abroad.
The association presently manages its 9th European Month of photography ( scheduled May 2023 ) with nearly all institutional partners of the country ( MNHA; Mudam, Casino art forum, Neimenster, CNA … ) and close collaboration with the Foto festivals in Berlin, Brussels, Lisbon, Paris and Vienna. Leading topics in 2019, 2021 and 2002 are related to nature and identity in photography.
The festival includes for the 2023 edition the “Europäische Kunstakademie in the neighbouring German Town of Trier