About TUPF

About TUPF

Toronto Urban Photography Festival (TUPF) is an annual event that adds a critical voice to contemporary photographic practices within the context of the urban. TUPF uses critical insights of urban environments and photography to question what constitutes both the urban in context of the city, as well as street within the context of photography. By engaging photographic practitioners and visual urbanists, TUPF creates a dialogue surrounding how the city is imagined and viewed as part of our daily human fabric.

2016 Executive Board

Cliff Davidson
Executive Director

Paul Brown
Vice Executive Director

Lisa Wu
Finance Director

Paul Kounine
Marketing & Communications Director

Ed Tse
Digital Assets Director

Daniela Behnod
Social Media Director and Graphic Designer

Michael Fil
Fundraising & Sponsorship Director

History

TUPF was established in 2012 and first run in 2013 after its founder, Cliff Davidson, found something missing in the Toronto photography festival scene. Building on his MA in Photography and Urban Cultures and ideas from the London Street Photography Festival (UK), Cliff set out to combine the visual appeal of photography with the intellectual rigour of critical sociology. TUPF truly came together after a diverse group of volunteers believed in the idea and became the team that formed the foundation of TUPF.

The first festival ran from March 9-23, 2013 and had work in 7 galleries, 6 urban talks, 5 workshops, and 5 photo walks. There were collaborations with Crossing Lines (UK), Humans of Toronto, Toronto Photo Walks, and Lomography Canada, and our original projects—The Disposable Camera Project (which became its own entity), and the TO Neighbourhoods Project. Our call for works had over 45 entries from all over the world including the UK, Germany, Unites States, Italy, and Canada. We had local (CP24, Metro, Torontoist, Spacing, 680 News) and international (JetAirways, Gulf News) media coverage as well as national media interest (CBC National, Radio-Canada). There were 5 main sponsors for 2013 (BlogTO, Toronto Image Works, Captain Printworks, ProStudios, and Lomograpy).

The second festival ran from June 27-July 12, 2014 and had work in 4 galleries, 5 urban talks, 5 workshops, and 6 walks. We also had more collaborations (A Nerd’s World, City of Toronto Archives, Disposable Camera Project, Humans of Toronto, Ryerson Imaging Centre, Toronto Green Community), new projects (TUPF Big Couch, Friends with Strangers), and community engagement events (Creative Works Studio). Our call for works had over 60 submissions from all over the world including Brazil, UK, Korea, United States, Hong Kong, Italy, and Canada. For 2014, there were 6 sponsors (BlogTO, Colourgenics, Steam Whistle Breweries, Nuvango, Lowepro/Joby, and Vistek,). In 2014, the Toronto Urban Photography Festival became a federally registered not-for-profit corporation.

In 2015 TUPF took a break from gallery showings due to budget and time constraints. We did, however, still run a host of activities and workshops throughout the year. Much of the work that went into 2015 has evolved into the 2016 festival plan. 2016 will see the relaunch of TUPF as a festival, including new branding, new website, and new programming. TUPF16 will bring the best of previous festival years and add new ideas to take TUPF forward.

TUPF is an entirely volunteer-run not-for-profit corporation. All members work with TUPF out of their love for all things photographic and urban. TUPF is mostly donation based so that anyone can attend. We believe that working together is what gets stuff done.

Vision

TUPF’s vision is to become an internationally renowned festival known for showcasing and bringing up-and-coming photographers and visual urbanists to the public’s attention. Additionally, TUPF will be a hub for up-and-coming photographers, the photography community, and photographic- and urban-concerned companies, to critically discuss and incubate ideas about urban issues and contemporary photographic practices.

Mission

TUPF’s mission is two-fold.

First, TUPF aims to nurture up-and-coming photographers and visual urbanists to critically go beyond the image through teaching and learning activities and a network of like-minded individuals and groups. This enables photographers to transform the static image into visual dialogues.

Second, TUPF aims to build its brand around being the festival known for showcasing and bringing up-and-coming photographers and visual urbanists to the public’s attention. This allows TUPF to build its brand as well as build up artists affiliated with the festival.

Tagline

Critically re-imagining and re-visualizing the urban through photography.Value Proposition

TUPF is more than a festival. It’s a way to connect up-and-coming photographers, visual urbanists, and the established photography community. It’s a place to critically examine and discuss the urban and contemporary photographic practices. TUPF also creates a space to educate photographers and visual urbanists to create visual dialogues.

Value Proposition

TUPF is more than a festival. It’s a way to connect up-and-coming photographers, visual urbanists, and the established photography community. It’s a place to critically examine and discuss the urban and contemporary photographic practices. TUPF also creates a space to educate photographers and visual urbanists to create visual dialogues.

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WANT TO JOIN OUR TEAM?

We’re always looking for motivated volunteers. We provide a lot of learning opportunities, and we’re kind of fun people too!

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