International Photofestival

Noorderlicht International Photofestival (2 Sept. – 7 Oct. 2012)
Landscape as the Illusion of Nature

Call for proposals
Photographers can submit their work. Suggestions by curators are also welcome.
The deadline is March 16.
Humans arose from the land, and have now definitively left it behind them. The earth has been subdued and cultivated, people have left the countryside for the city. The preservation of our natural environment is but a footnote on the political agenda.
Nevertheless, the desire for contact with nature remains strongly anchored. The urge to travel toward an unknown horizon is stubborn. Knowing that the realisation of this desire is an illusion, that every horizon lies within our grasp and every experience of the landscape is stage-managed, in no way detracts from this.

The main exhibition of Noorderlicht 2012 examines our ambiguous relation with nature. Where reality proves recalcitrant, the imagination of the artist dissolves the boundaries. The photographer/auteur can appropriate the landscape to share his or her – and at the same time, our – dreams, and permit us to travel in an unreal world for a moment.
Submitting work
Submissions and suggestions by photographers and curators are welcome. Through 16 March these can be sent to the curator Wim Melis, via ftp or by email to .
Guidelines for submissions

Museum Willem van Haren, Museum Belvedere
– meditative nature, a projection of the psyche;
– the orchestrated landscape, interventions in reality;
– digital-imaginary nature, where algorithms open up a non-existent world;
– the leisure landscape, a look at the cultivated experience of nature;
– mythic and nurturing nature, an expression of connections with traditions;
– the sustainable landscape, protection of what still remains;
– the guilty landscape, hidden stories behind the outward beauty.
As these examples indicate, Noorderlicht is looking for photography with a narrative or metaphorical character. In other words: not purely aesthetic photography devoted solely to recording the beauty of the landscape.
The 2012 Noorderlicht Photofestival will take place in the Frisian landscape, in interior spaces and outdoor areas. The central theme location is Museum Belvédère (Heerenveen/Oranjewoud), supplemented by Museum Dr8888 (Drachten) and the Willem van Haren Museum (Heerenveen). These new locations bring with them a challenge to find new exhibition forms and have in part inspired our selection of this theme.