As we approach a new landmark anniversary, it is not unusual to feel a certain sense of excitement, impatience even, as we eagerly look ahead to what comes next. What is important, however, is to take our time and to savour each and every year. This is how La Gacilly Photo Festival has grown, taking its time and acting with sincerity. It is now officially entering its 19th year, ready to unveil new talents and new perspectives. New visions from artists, who are witnesses of history and culture – prophets (if there is such a thing) of a future, be it devastating or full of promise.

These photographers remind us how the Festival’s fundamental aims – to Inspire, Inform and Engage – are more relevant than ever. For it is all about living in an enlightened way and about being well informed. Our exhibitions also abound in emotions and sensitivity due to the extraordinary creativity that is implemented and displayed here.

Finally, we are also here to share values and take sustainable action. For several years, the Festival Association has been leading a series of projects to support young people and anyone who wishes to get involved with us via our artistic and cultural outreach programmes, and via our socially responsible initiatives designed to foster sharing, environmental protection and a sense of community. Take, for example, our travelling educational photographic exhibition about Sustainable Development Goals, which is an excellent demonstration of this.

Using photography to open a window onto the world and doing so from a rural community such as La Gacilly is a way of defending diversity and developing a sense of otherness, whether artistic, geographical or social. It is about creating the right conditions for an encounter.

Let’s relish this latest edition of the Festival, which promises some wonderful artistic discoveries, and let’s give our warmest thanks to everyone who has contributed and made it possible for us to stage it again this summer.

Stéphanie Retière-Secret
Director of La Gacilly Photo Festival