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FotoFest 2000 - Houston Chronicle Editorial
February 29, 2000

FotoFest a month-long, eye-opening event for Houston

If one could somehow distill the essence of Houston and photograph it, part of the resultant image surely would appear as a landscape with a truly global perspective. Houston would be seen in this photo essay as the unique place that can host an unusual, eye-opening event like FotoFest 2000, which begins “the International Month of Photography” with a large kickoff downtown on March 3.

The event, now in its eighth biennial exposure, has put the city squarely on the map in the world of photography, and the interaction of art with city life has made it the only such place in the United States able to sustain a photo festival of such caliber.

The event is remarkable for many reasons. It is part of the “Festival of Lights,” which for the year 2000 combines the activities of 22 of the world’s largest photo festivals across Europe and North and South America.

Houston FotoFest also has earned a reputation for its ground-breaking exhibitions and discovery of new artists, and that tradition continues.

Of particular note is a planned exhibit this year of works by Korean photographers who are among a new generation that will have, for the first time in history, a chance to show their work to the broader outside world.

Of course, at the crux of it all are those photographic images that allow the various artists involved to interact with the city in a variety of ways. Displays and exhibitions will be at all sorts of public sites at some 70 locations from Houston to Galveston, many of them lying within the central city and focusing on the booming Theater District and Houston’s historic buildings. The Foley’s store downtown, for example, is turning over its large display windows to the event. Part of that display will look at the photographic history of the civil rights movement as experienced at a large, Southern department store.

A variety of public and visually exciting events will kick off the festival this week. Houstonians should take note of this international happening and avail themselves of the opportunity to discover some spectacular art from around the world and to rediscover both some local talent and interesting parts of their own city.