Look3 Photography Festival comes to Cville

Event lasts June 13 to June 19, features several artists

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Several exhibits and installations are on display throughout the City, including on the Downtown Mall. 

Lauren Hornsby | Cavalier Daily

The week-long Look3 Festival of the Photograph began Monday June 13.

The festival brings together noted photographers from around the world in a wide array of exhibitions, talks and educational seminars at several locations in Charlottesville.

Monday night, the Community Print Share event invited both amateur and professional photographers to put their work on display for a night at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center.

Executive Director Mary Virginia Swanson said the open event was a continuation from the original Look3, which began 28 years ago in National Geographic photographer Mike Nichols’ backyard.

“The spirit of it was that anyone could show their work — anyone who was part of the community,” Swanson said. “You didn’t have to be somebody, you didn’t have to be famous and you didn’t have to have fancy prints. Anybody could show their work.”

Exhibits and installations are on display throughout the city, including a multimedia work currently on the Downtown Mall. Occupying the west wall of the Landmark Hotel, the exhibit spotlights a number of environmental issues, while also allowing viewers to watch artists’ video messages about the topics of the pieces.

Photographs by 22-year-old Olivia Bee — who made Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30: Art & Style” list for 2016 — are paired in another exhibit with works by photographer Doug DuBois.

The two artists take differing but complementary views of youth, Bee said.

“I love how it’s photojournalism, but very cinematic,” Bee says of Dubois’ work. “My photographs are very visceral, and a lot of my vocabulary is through color and motion, and the one moment that is very different from the next. The all-encompassing emotional moment, and building a narrative as it reveals itself.”

Bee’s prints at the festival are taken from her new book “Kids in Love”, which she describes as “photojournalism with a romantic eye.”

Look3 will continue until June 19, featuring several artists talks and other events at the McGuffey Art Center and Paramount Theater, among other locations.

Swanson said families are invited to come and have their pictures taken the final day of the festival at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center.

“I won’t be surprised if we have people come to Family Photo Day who may never have had a professional photographer take their picture as a family,” Swanson said. “We hope to have new families, we hope to have new Americans that have come here that may not have had a picture taken since they came here.”

The festival attracts community members and distant travelers alike, Swanson said.

“There’s something for everyone at Look3 this year, there really is,” Swanson added. 

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