This post is a translation from my German blog, where you can find a gallery with some images taken during the festival to give you an impression.
End of May, I was in Zingst attending the annual photo festival “Horizonte Zingst”. It’s called environmental photo festival, because it is focused on our environment and how we treat it. I was there for the first time, but it was held for the tenth time.
Zingst is located at the German coast of the Baltic sea in the state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It’s a small seaside resort.
For one week, photography rules the town. Many, many exhibitions are held outside as well as inside. More than 120 workshops were organised on so many different topics. And everything took place in a very relaxed atmosphere.
The festival lasts for 8 days, starting on Saturday and lasting ’til next Sunday, while the main time is Thursday ’til Sunday. All days have a full loaded schedule where you can pick the topics of your interest or just sit on the beach and enjoy the great landscape.
Each day, there are several exhibition openings with speeches or at least an interview of the photographer. You can learn the idea behind the images or about her style of work. I’d recommend, visiting the exhibitions of your interest at least twice: first alone and for the second time when the photographer is there. Im my gallery I have some impressions of the exhibitions for you.
Each day there are also lots of workshops you can attend. There are workshops for beginners as well as for pros. You can learn the basics of photography or special techniques and sharpen your skills. In sum there were about 120 workshops held during the week.
On the beach they set up a big screen every evening to show a compilation of what happened during that day, called “Bilderflut” (image flood). In approximately 1 hour you can have a brief overview of what happened during the workshops and see resulting images of the participants. It’s kind of a news show on television but with 2 anchor men standing life in front of the screen and the movies (short documentaries) are not the screen behind them.
You can attend it while either sitting in the sand, standing on the pier or (if lucky enough) sitting in one of the deck chairs of the beach club, set up only for supporting the Bilderflut.
the media team has a very hard job. 8 guys starting on 7 a.m. each day to film and cut the movies to bring them life in the evening. The result is not only played on the big screen on the beach, but also streamed to the internet. At Facebook (unfortunately nor on Youtube), you can follow the show, even when not in Zingst.
Central point of reference it the Max Hünten Haus. Max Hünten was a painter, born 1869 in Düsseldorf. During the 1920s he move to Zings after having visited The Darß, a wild forest between Zingst and Ahrenhoop. Nowadays the area is a preservation zone. That forest is untouched since many centuries.
Max Hünten also was a photographer. At the local history museum they have found 500 glass plates. It’s the same technique Anselm Adams has used. The 500 glass plates were taken during the 4 years lasting world travel of Max Hünten from 1910 to 1914. The treasure was the initial impulse to establish Zingst as a location for photography. It’s also the spectacular landscape and the special light here at the coast, that make Zingst a special location. So, the festival was founded and backed by some of the major companies in photography.
As a festival focused on the environment, you can see many images showing the beauty and the ruined beauty of our plant. Photo students, photo journalist as well as established landscape and nature photographers displayed there fantastic images. I really recommend having a look on the gallery in my German post.
Between Thursday and Saturday, the town became even more crowded than the days before. I guess, not only because of the very nice weather and the prolonged weekend (that Thursday we have had a public holiday, so that many took the Friday as a bridging day off). During those so-called core-days, they also have had a photo market in town. Lots of tents holding booths of dealers and the major photography companies. You were able to chat with sales engineers and expert adviser, try gear or even get some gear lent to test it outside in combination with your own gear. What a chance!
I guess, that this wasn’t my last visit in Zingst.
Here I have the “Bilderflut” of the last night (Sunday). It’s twice as long as the shows of the other nights. But, it gives you a brief overview of the whole festival. Even it is stored on Facebook, you can watch it without begin a member of Facebook. Btw. at minute 44:50 you can see on of my images as a part of “Best of Zingst” in the category “Landscape” as #3 out of 15.
Much of fun!