/ Festival


5th iteration of PhotoKTM to take place from 24 Feb – 31 March 2023



photo.circle is proud to announce that the fifth edition of PhotoKTM is scheduled to be held between 24 February to 31 March this year. 

How do we come to terms with the staggering planetary crisis that is unfolding around us every day? What are the stories and histories that we have been told that have shaped our common understanding of current urgencies, despite our disparate geopolitical and economic realities? What are the stories that we are choosing to tell? These are some of the concerns that the festival will attempt to address this year. 

“We dedicate this edition of the festival to gather, as a community of storytellers, to think about what role we play to help restore voice and agency to non-humans while so many of our communities still struggle to find voice themselves; to rebuild relationships to land and place despite so much forced relocation and flux; to question how contemporary values that frame knowledge production, meaning making, language and rubric might be failing us; to learn anew how to pay attention, give name, mourn loss, make place, relearn histories, see beyond; and to move towards a shared politics of mutualism, collaboration, justice and care,” states the festival’s thematic framing.

The festival will platform visual projects, and learning initiatives by a range of participants including artist, curator and teacher Munem Wasif from Bangladesh; Swiss artist and writer Uriel Orlow; Kathmandu-based digital archive Nepal Picture Library; KTK-Belt Project, which works towards catalyzing new models of biodiversity conservation and environmental learning in eastern Nepal; Indian filmmaker Sriram Murali; The Feather Library – an initiative co-founded by Isha Munshi to document, identify and study feathers of Indian birds; artist and writer Alana Hunt from Miriwoong country in the north-west of Australia; Mexican/British multidisciplinary visual artist Monica Alcazar Duarte; Indian filmmaker Amar Kanwar; and author, art curator, filmmaker, and theorist of photography and visual culture, Ariella Azoulay, among others. 

Each edition of PhotoKTM also hosts a research residency. This year’s residency is being organized in collaboration with Jatayu Vulture Restaurant and Bird Conservation Nepal (BCN). Four artists and educators — Sarah Kazmi (Pakistan/Norway), Ajay Narsingh Rana (Nepal), Hillside Projects/ Jonas Böttern (Sweden) and Nilanjana Nandy (India) — will spend 4 weeks at the unique Jatayu Vulture Restaurant based in Kawasoti, Nawalparasi, which is approx 200 km from Kathmandu and on the rim of Chitwan National Park. Participants will learn about vultures, community-managed conservation models, resilience, loss and possibilities of regeneration and co-existence at large. Artists will share their findings in an open house in Kathmandu during the opening week of the festival.     

PhotoKTM also hosts the South Asia Incubator — a flagship program designed to create a platform for emerging and mid-career visual practitioners from across South Asia to engage with global professionals and institutions who can provide inputs to exhibit, publish and develop their practices further.  

PhotoKTM will also host artist talks, panels and conversations, workshops, portfolio reviews, and networking events among other core and collateral programming throughout the festival period. The festival will continue its partnership with Lalitpur-based non-profit Srijanalaya to run a robust Art Education and Outreach program through the festival period, to engage young people, families and educators with the ideas and projects platformed by the festival. 

The festival will begin with an opening week of programs from 25 February to 2 March and exhibitions will run till 31 March 2023. A special trip to the forest is planned from 3-6 March where festival participants and visitors will visit Chitwan National Park and several initiatives in the surrounding area. 

The festival is free and open to the public. 

Download the Press Kit here.

About the organizers

Established in 2007, photo.circle is a Kathmandu based transdisciplinary artist-led organization that creates resources for visual storytellers, researchers, educators, activists and other cultural producers to engage with social change. photo.circle runs Nepal Picture Library – a digital archive that builds a multicultural and pluralist representation of Nepali history; and PhotoKTM, a biennial photo festival that takes place in the public domain and is free for all to attend.

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For further enquiries, please contact:

Marissa Taylor at press@photoktm.com