Leading brands at Photopia Hamburg

According to to the organizer, Hamburg Messe + Congress (HMC), major imaging brands will be represented at Photopia Hamburg, which will take place in the Hanseatic city from September 23 to 26 as a festival for the entire digital imaging industry. These include camera and lens manufacturers such as Canon, Sony, Nikon, Leica and Panasonic as well as Sigma and Tamron, but also the monitor manufacturers BenQ and Eizo, print service providers such as WhiteWall and the paper manufacturers Ilford and Hahnemühle. Several retailing companies and distributors, including Calumet, Foto Erhardt, IPS, HapaTeam and Probis will also exhibit.

With the Photopia Summit, exhibitions and photo events at various locations in the city, as well as a year-round Internet platform, the event is intended to provide an inspiring environment for the entire imaging community. Target groups include not only professionals, amateur enthusiasts, hobby photographers and smartphone users, but also trade visitors such as professional image service providers and distributors, manufacturers and, of course, photo retailers.

The exhibiting companies made a conscious decision to participate in the trade fair premiere: “We are delighted that Hamburg Messe is establishing a new, innovative platform for digital imaging with Photopia,” commented Rainer Führes, CEO of Canon Germany. “With the mix of a community festival, touch and try opportunities, photo workshops and walks as well as lectures by renowned photographers, this multichannel concept meets the current zeitgeist of modern event concepts and gives us the perfect setting for the presentation of our extensive product portfolio and our vision for imaging the future. We look forward to the creative and personal exchange with the community and to taking a look into the future with all imaging enthusiasts.”

“Photopia Hamburg is an exciting trade show and event concept for the digital imaging industry,” added Thilo Röhrig, Commercial Director of Sony Germany. “The platform gives Sony the opportunity to present our latest product innovations on site and to bring their creative possibilities to life. That’s s why we are here and expect a large number of active visitors! ”

“We at WhiteWall are very pleased to be part of the new top event,” added WhiteWall Managing Director Thomas Alscheid. “The city is an important location for photographic art and culture. Therefore we support the Photopia Hamburg as a new highlight in the photo scene.”

New hall concept

A special highlight of the Photopia Hamburg is the spectacular hall concept developed by the internationally known stage and set designer Jens Weber. On 20,000 square meters in two halls, the unique installation of a city of its own with streets, shops, stages and a park will play with perspectives, shapes and figures. Around 350 containers from all over the world representing the vity’s buildings are an homage to Hamburg and its port.

With long street lines featuring spectacular photo motifs at their ends, park-like green areas and two large stages for national and international photographers and influencers, this hall concept will not only create a special framework for the festival of the imaging community, but is also part of the staging itself. The artistic director of Photopia Hamburg, Christian Popkes, is one of the most renowned figures in the German photo scene.

Tickets for PHOTOPIA Hamburg are available at www.photopia-hamburg.com for 19 euros, day tickets for the Creative Content Conference are available for 119 euros, the ticket for all four conference days (all-in ticket) is available for 269 euros Euro. Admission to Photopia Hamburg is included in the conference ticket. The website also provides constantly updated information about the program as well as organizational information with a view to the pandemic situation.

Bernd Aufderheide, CEO of Hamburg Messe + Congress: “Idealism and Passion”

During four days, Photopia Hamburg is set to provide the whole photo and imaging industry with the long-missed opportunity for personal meetings and a broad platform to present its products and services to the general public. In this interview, Bernd Aufderheide, Chairman of the Management Board and CEO of Hamburg Messe + Congress (HMC), speaks about the current status of preparations against the background of the corona pandemic as well as his ways to deal with expectations and a lot of encouragement from the industry.

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: Mr. Aufderheide, Photopia Hamburg,

Bernd Aufderheide, CEO of Hamburg Messe + Congress (Foto: Anatol Kotte)

which will starts September 23, 2021, is HMC’s first own event in a completely physical form since the beginning of the corona pandemic. And its is also a premiere for the photo and imaging industry. How are you and your team doing?

Bernd Aufderheide: We are, of course, all very excited and are looking forward to the start of Photopia Hamburg. The planning was and still is anything but easy. We have been experiencing a unprecedented global crisis for 18 months and now we cannot pretend that everything is all right again. Nevertheless, the currently low incidences, an ongoing vaccination campaign and extensive testing options are helping us to start our heart project this year. And the industry honors that.

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: What makes you believe that?

Bernd Aufderheide: We want Photopia Hamburg to send a strong signal over the coming years and join hands with the industry to develop it into something great. This means we have to make a start now, whatever the conditions. While we still have to accept some limitations here or there, we are proud to offer a rich programme to all stakeholders. Then, in 2022, we will go all out for a full-fledged show, hopefully in a more or less normalized situation.

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: A cancellation this year was not up for discussion?

Bernd Aufderheide: Of course there were moments in these recent months where we felt unsure whether Photopia Hamburg would be able to go ahead as planned. But we did not waver – after all, as trade fair organizers we are optimists by design. We have developed a comprehensive hygiene concept which we are sure will allow us to carry out events safely and smoothly. Of course, under normal circumstances it would have been our goal to include a larger number of exhibitors in this debut than were ultimately willing to commit. But I think in a situation such as this, it doesn’t hurt to be a bit humble. All the big companies will be part of it, which makes us extremely happy, even though our inaugural event will not be able to reflect the full bandwidth of the imaging industry as we originally hoped. 

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: What encouraged you during the preparations?

Bernd Aufderheide: The Photopia motto “share your vision” expresses our mind-set: For planning an event as huge as Photopia Hamburg in challenging times like today, you not only need a healthy amount of idealism and passion but also, and especially so, unconditional trust in your strong partners and supporters on the exhibitors’ side. We have received heaps of praise from all parts of the industry for Photopia and its innovative concept. We’ve even been commended by companies who ultimately decided against participating in this year’s event. All this positive feedback has shown us clearly that we are on the right track. What is more, we have been able to recruit a formidable team of true industry luminaries for Photopia Hamburg, from the internationally renowned stage designer Jens Weber who developed the decoration concept for the exhibition halls, to our artistic director Christian Popkes, and through to our honorary patron, the world-famous fashion photographer Ellen von Unwerth. We have received plenty of praise from professional circles for this, as well. Finally, I would like to express my appreciation for the strong support we are getting from the government and the entire city.

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: What do you think of the repeated comparison between Photopia Hamburg and Photokina?

Bernd Aufderheide: This comparison is limping and therefore makes no sense from my point of view. I still know the Photokina from my time at the KölnMesse as a set event for the photo industry. In contrast, Photopia Hamburg pursues a contemporary concept with its festival character. Everyone comes together here: industry experts, professionals, amateur photographers, drone pilots, gear freaks, artists, music lovers and international megastars. We set up the festival for all of these people and offer them the appropriate stages, rooms and opportunities. In the long term, we want to map the topics of virtual reality and AI even more strongly and also target young smartphone users in a targeted manner in order to make Hamburg the new photo capital of Germany together with our partners and exhibitors.

INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: What can visitors to Photopia Hamburg expect in particular?

Bernd Aufderheide: First of all, there is the spectacular hall concept – a homage to Hamburg as the gateway to the world. More than 350 containers create their own world of shapes, figures and perspectives for visitors to immerse themselves in. Then of course the offers of the exhibitors, including leading manufacturers of cameras and camera accessories. In cooperation with our partners such as the Reeperbahn Festival and Online Marketing Rockstars, we have put together a diverse program on two stages with keynotes, specialist lectures, master classes, exhibitions, workshops and many more.