London Photo Festival & London Photo Gallery

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Where are they now? Karolin Schwab – Winner Best in Show October 2011

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Karolin won Best in Show of the inaugural London Photo Festival in October 2011. We catch up with her to find out what she is doing now and how participating in the Festival helped shape her photographic path:-

It’s been some time now since I have been part of the fantastic London Photo Festival, but my memories of it are still quite vivid. I heard about the LPF from one of my teachers at University in Germany, where I was studying for a Teacher’s degree in Fine Art. Since I was planning to spend a semester abroad in London anyway and now found out there would be a chance to exhibit my work, I didn’t hesitate a second and booked my space.

So finally the big day of the Private View came and I remember walking around the exhibition thinking “damn, there are some really good photographers in this show, who really know how to use their camera.” A little bit embarrassed about my own photo, I tried to look at the positive sides like I got to meet a lot of interesting people and generally the whole experience of exhibition practice was very helpful. So, as I was in company of nice people and good wine, you can imagine how I surprised I was, when suddenly my name was called out for “Best in Show”.

I didn’t expect it at all (I can’t emphasize this enough!) and I think it actually took me a few days to realize everything. Also the fact that my picture got sold straight from the show seemed very unreal at first. It was all too good. I’m still in touch with the Swedish collector who bought my piece and it’s such a nice thing to know my photo is now hanging miles away in somebody else’s living room. Still, what was even more important to me – that night, after winning the award, my boosted ego decided to take my career as an artist seriously, I quit my studies in Germany and stayed in London and finished my Fine Art degree there.

Looking back, there isn’t much to say other than: it has been the best decision I’ve ever made. After two wonderful years full of art, putting up and taking down many more shows and finally graduating from University, I am know back in Germany (Berlin) dividing my time between working for a gallery and concentrating on my own art work. The next show in London for this year is just around the corner ( and shortly after that I will do a two week artist residency.

Nothing left to say other than life is good. In fact, it’s great and I really have to thank everyone from the LPF, without whom all this might have never happened.

© Karolin Schwab


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