Capture Photography Festival 2.0 Returns April 2-29, 2015

Check back in March 2015 for the complete Capture Photography Festival 2.0 Guide!

Capture is an annual celebration of photography and lens-based art.

The Capture Photography Festival returns for the month of April of 2015 with Metro Vancouver’s high-profile not-for-profit celebration of local and international contemporary photography and lens-based art. Capture will once again celebrate and promote photography through a convergence of exhibitions by preeminent cultural institutions and commercial galleries, innovative public installations, as well as a variety of forums, community events and films.

Why Photography?

As photography becomes an increasingly accessible art form it’s practitioners and admirers are forced to ask themselves evermore difficult questions. Namely, how do we now distinguish the amateur from the professional, the casual from the conceptual, appropriation from influence, and more recently, the technique from the tool? There are no clear cut answers to these questions, rather, they’ve developed into entry points for artists to explore exactly what it means for be making photographs today. Capture aims to add to this discourse while opening the discussion into a city-wide conversation, appealing to photography converts and skeptics alike.

Why Vancouver?

By showcasing the best of local and international photographic art forms, Capture points to the region’s rich photographic history. Over the last 30 years, Vancouver has launched some of contemporary art’s best known photographers through the movement known as photoconceptualism. Dating back to the group known as the “Vancouver School” in the 1980s, casual photo-based work gave young iconoclast artists a chance to mark out new thought-provoking questions about what art was and what it could become. Since then, photoconceptualism has become a proud badge for Vancouver to wear in the global art scene, proudly representing artist like Vikki Alexander, Stan Douglas, Rodney Graham, Ken Lum, Jeff Wall, and Ian Wallace. By reflecting a history of local photography within a global context, Capture has inspired photography lovers of all backgrounds while attracting new audiences to celebrate and learn more about our region’s vibrant art historical roots.

PDF Press Release

Celebrate and Connect

The festival promotes awareness of Vancouver’s unique history of photoconceptualism while creating multiple platforms for showcasing new practices from local, international, and emerging talents. Capture provides momentum for Vancouver residents and visitors of all ages to celebrate and connect through the art of photography.

Join us in realizing our vision of inspiring creative community engagement, celebrating the culture and practice of photography, and fostering a vibrant photographic community in Vancouver.

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Capture Curated Exhibitions

Ensuing Pictures: The Peer-to-Peer Exhibition

Marten Elder untitled, 2013 Marten Elder untitled, 2013

Curated by: Emmy Lee
Where: Concourse Gallery, Emily Carr University of Art + Design
When: 05/10/2013 – 27/10/2013

Capture commissioned an exhibition at Emily Carr’s Concourse Gallery; curator Emmy Lee invited established photographers to nominate emerging talent in a showcase of lens-based art that explores a diverse range of themes and techniques. Nominating artists include Vikky Alexander, Jim Breukelman, Mark Lewis, Mark Rudewel, and Jeff Wall.

The selected emerging artists are based in Los Angeles, Paris/Geneva, Vancouver and Victoria and their work demonstrates the expansive possibilities the media currently represents. Displaying an awareness of the history of photography and its varied manifestations-as well as painting, film, and sculpture-these artists challenge boundaries and reinterpret traditional genres to create works that represent the diverse development of photo-based art today.

Visit Exhibition page for more information

An Evolutionary Look into Vancouver Street Photography: Foncie Pulice Foncie Pulice into the 21st Century

Lincoln Clarkes Lincoln Clarkes

Curated by: Julie Lee and Katie Huisman
Where: Museum of Vancouver
When: 01/10/2013 – 01/31/2014

Street photography is traditionally part of the ‘straight photography’ movement, priding itself in the unaltered photograph that, without bias, documents real life.  The practice of street photography has become even more popular in the 21st century – favouring society’s increasing need to document, capture and share everyday life, snapshot by snapshot.

Foncie Pulice, with his custom-built silver camera made of war surplus materials, could be found on Granville Street from the mid-1930’s through to 1979, taking thousands of photographs – capturing families, couples, and friends happily strutting through downtown Vancouver.  The excitement and energy captured in the faces of Foncie’s public are at odds with the face society would put forward to the 21st century photographer – a public now highly sensitized to photography, privacy-obsessed, and acutely aware of the disjunction between public and private realms.

Four contemporary photographers, Lincoln Clarkes, Brian Howell, Angela Fama, and John Goldsmith have been invited to examine and respond to Foncie Pulice and his body of work.

Visit Exhibition page for more information

Public Installations

Supporting New and Emerging Talent

Capture is committed to supporting youth and emerging talent with public installations, student exhibitions, and master classes on photography through partnerships with Artists for Kids, Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Langara College, University of British Columbia, and Vancouver Photo Workshops.

“Capture in Transit” aims to enrich urban life through large-scale, photo-based installations at eight Canada Line stations from Waterfront to YVR-Airport. Capture’s open photography competition offers amateur and professional photographers an opportunity to have their work presented at Canada Line’s King Edward station during the festival.

View all Public Installations

Edward Burtynsky <em>Thjorsá River #1, Iceland</em>, 2012 Edward Burtynsky Thjorsá River #1, Iceland, 2012

Massive photographs occupied space normally reserved for advertising in the downtown core, leveraging Pattison Outdoor billboards to present engaging photographic work in public space.


Capture is a not-for-profit organization. We are always looking for people to assist us in the months leading up to the festival and during the festival in October. Please contact us, providing details regarding your availability, experience, and reasons for your interest in volunteering. A resume or CV is appreciated and can be sent to:

Become a Volunteer

Thank You

We thank these businesses, foundations, galleries, and individuals for their generous support.

Supporting Sponsors

Contributing Sponsors



Capture is Supported By


Executive Director

Festival Program Manager

Website and Digital Solutions


  • Mollie Burke

Board Of Directors

  • Mike Harris
  • Ian McGuffie
  • Eric Savics
  • Kim Spencer-Nairn
  • David Thorpe
  • Todd Towers


  • Daina Augaitis Vancouver Art Gallery
  • Christos Dikeakos Artist
  • Shane O’Brien Gallery Jones
  • Helga Pakasaar Presentation House Gallery
  • Nigel Prince Contemporary Art Gallery

Founding Donors

  • Brian & Andrea Hill
  • Bruce Wright
  • Eric Savics & Kim Spencer-Nairn
  • Hy's of Canada LTD
  • John & Nina Cassils
  • Leonard Schein
  • Michael O'Brian Family Foundation
  • Mike & Sandra Harris
  • The Radcliffe Foundation
  • Ron Regan
  • Stephen Carruthers
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • In Memory of Samantha J Walker

Initial Website Design Consultation

  • Mathew Arthur

with Capture


Capture welcomes submissions from cultural institutions, artist-run centres and galleries exhibiting primarily lens-based art. We are currently not accepting individual artist submissions. Please check back for more information about future calls for submissions from participating organizations for Individual artists.