Fotofestiwal was born in 2001 as one of the first photography events in Poland. Since then, both photography and the ways of organising cultural events have changed. Fotofestiwal has always been up to date with these changes. It is intended as a space for various forms of photography and a forum for discussion on art and society, but also as a search for alternative methods of talking about photography and presenting it.
The festival always starts in May, and every year it attracts over 20 thousand visitors from all around the world. The main exhibitions are prepared especially for the festival and they present diverse curator visions. They constitute the core of the whole festival programme and provide main festival themes. The exhibitions are always complemented by accompanying events, where different audiences exchange their experiences. Visitors, artists, curators and teachers meet during workshops, a portfolio review, lectures, discussions and evening slide shows. All the events take place in old factories, tenement buildings and villas of Łódź – post-industrial architecture creates a truly unique atmosphere for presentation of photographs.
The main organiser of Fotofestiwal is the Foundation of Visual Education which has been cooperating with Łódź Art Center, Art Factory and the City of Łódź Office for a number of years. The organisers have also created the Photo Festival Union – an association that brings together European photography festivals, and the festival itself is a member of the Festival of Light – a similar association operating globally.