Sharjah’s global photography festival presents 2500 stories by 400 photographers


Organised by the Sharjah Government Media Bureau, the global photography festival runs from February 28 to March 5, 2024, at the Expo

With more than 2,500 awe-inspiring and thought-provoking images from around the world, Sharjah’s Xposure International Photography Festival is gearing up to host its 8th and biggest edition, from February 28 – March 5 in Expo Centre Sharjah.

These images, and the stories behind it, will be showcased on a spectacular 32,888 sqm festival platform by more than 400 visual storytellers from over 50 nations through curated exhibitions, panel discussions, workshops and more, making Xposure 2024 the world’s largest celebration of photography, film and other mediums of visual arts.

The festival organiser, Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), successfully attracted over 20,000 visitors to the 7th edition of Xposure last year and is preparing to welcome an even larger audience this year. The event promises an exciting showcase of global talent with more than 200 activities led by over 150 world-renowned photographers.

The programme includes over 90 solo and group exhibitions, more than 45 inspiring talks and discussions, over 25 film screenings, and upwards of 65 expert-led workshops. Additionally, there will be over 50 professional portfolio reviews, along with several guided tours, book signings, and a trade exhibition featuring 20 international brands, all spanning the 7-day event.

Commenting on the upcoming festival, Her Excellency Alya Al Suwaidi, Director of Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), stressed: “Xposure has ascended to global prominence throughout its previous editions, emerging as a premier artistic hub where visionaries in photography and visual arts converge. In Sharjah, they unveil a treasure of years spent in exploration, travel, and documenting every detail of life and the world.

The festival serves as a gateway, through which photographers transport us to diverse realms and nations with their exhibitions and images, showcasing a spectrum of humanitarian, developmental, aesthetic, civilizational, cultural, and social themes. It’s an invitation to engage with and support critical and noble causes.”

The SGMB Director added: “This year, the festival expands further to affirm its response to the volume of participation it annually receives from all around the world, continuing to gather the experiences of hundreds of leading photographers and transforming them into an opportunity for knowledge, learning, and understanding of successful experiences that reflect the beauty of the image and the strength of its impact.”

Those attending Xposure 2024 can secure their exclusive space to participate in a diverse array of empowering workshops led by leading industry experts from around the world. With over 65 workshops and masterclasses, these hands-on sessions cater to photographers of all skill levels, providing practical guidance and education. The festival will also host over 45 inspirational talks and sessions from elite names in photography and film, offering unique insights and experiences.

This focus on education reflects Xposure’s and SGMB’s commitment to nurturing growth and skill development in the photography community.

Xposure 2024 will feature more 15 upskilling focus groups where attendees can expand their horizons through specific genres and techniques. More than 50 professional portfolio reviews, led by experienced photographers, will provide emerging talents with personalised feedback and guidance. These sessions further enhance the educational aspect of the festival, offering invaluable opportunities for skill enhancement and career development.

Professionals and enthusiasts will be excited for the return of the festival’s must-attend trade show, renowned for featuring the latest in technology, and exclusive deals from 20 leading manufacturers and retailers. Through the years, this space has served as a networking hub for professionals seeking new equipment, directors of photography, gearhouse specialists, and retailers looking to expand their offerings, and Xposure promises an even bigger extravaganza for 2024.

For this year’s edition, Xposure once again extends a special invitation to art collectors, urging them to not only celebrate art but to “own the celebration.” Art collectors have the chance to acquire rare and iconic photography directly from the artists themselves, increasing the potential of signed prints and ultimately the value of the pieces. This unique opportunity adds a distinctive layer to the festival, emphasising the connection between collectors and the celebrated works on display, inviting people in the art world to own a piece of photographic history.

Xposure 2024 marks another chapter in the festival’s consistent growth. From its inception in 2016, the festival has expanded year after year, solidifying its status as a global platform for photography and film professionals, enthusiasts, and all those with a love for visual art.