Marta Kochanek is a freelance photographer, curator and archivist. Her photographs have been shown several times in both group and solo exhibitions, including Mall Galleries in London, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery as well as Verge Art Brooklyn in New York. Her work has also appeared in numerous publications, national and international professionals honorably mentioned her works through the most important and prestigious photographic competitions like: Px3 Paris, International Aperture Awards, International Photography Awards, as well as Art Kudos.

Marta is a proud founder of the QUEER’ists, which is an on-going photography project. QUEER’ists most of all is about promoting queer artists.  It is also about bringing emerging as well as established artist in one place, artists that have achieved high levels of success within art, the project is designed to be a platform to all LGBT artists and art lovers. Her aim is to take a look at Gay, Lesbian and Queer individuals expressing themselves through the art and other creative ways of living.

She is currently curating 1st Annual QUEER’ists Art Exhibition that is held in Fotofilia Gallery in Birmingham (12th July – 6th August 2011). The exhibition also features work of Violetta Jara, Anna Szlandakowska,   Dora Bauer, T.R.Robertson, Jak Flash, Julia Frost, John Yeadon, Ben Webb, Roger Anthony Yolanda Mapes. Marta and her queerists are looking for galleries that would like to further exhibit this project.

Marta accepted membership of Young Photographers United and is also a member of London Photographic Association.

 One of the artists that Marta featured, Nancy Rodrigo, says this about the Queerists project:

“Queerists is a wonderful project, and I know it has touched many people’s lives already. Most importantly-young people who are coming out in places where it’s dangerous or deadly to be queer, people who are isolated, people who may not even be aware of their identities…[her] project will save lives by validating queer people. [She is] an extraordinary photographer with great ideas, and [she is] already changing the world” – Nancy Rodrigo, Painter

Marta is very much interested in developing both an online as well as an off line existence of the project- extending it and letting creative queer people be part of each event. She shares with us that “I received a copious amount of wonderful emails and only one homophobic email so I think I am doing right”. Marta, so do we.

To see Marta and her work in person, check out the 1st Annual QUEER’ists Art exhibition at the Fotofilia Gallery, and the follow up show at The Glass Box. In the meantime, visit her personal website at www.martakochanek.com and her QUEER’ists project website at www.queerists.com

Favorite LGBT (or LGBT friendly) bar/club: “The Loft Lounge in Birmingham – very stylish, love it!”

Favorite thing to do: “I sometimes like to sit opposite to a huge fountain in Coventry, which is also opposite to the BBC radio. Just sit and think.”

Insider’s tip: “I discovered some nice, hidden places when I was working for a local newspaper. My tip is: keep your eyes open!

Photographs © 2011 Marta Kochanek

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