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NEPN was established in 2009 to discuss and develop photography in the North East of England and beyond.

Working with photographers, artists, curators and a wide range of cultural partners, we aim to create a lively and informed context for photographic activity and to encourage new audiences for photography.

NEPN is hosted by and is an initiative of the Northern Centre of Photography at the University of Sunderland.

With our partners, we produce new opportunities for photographers through commissions, talks, discussion groups, and portfolio review events. We also curate a programme of themed symposiums and conferences to explore ideas and inspire fresh thinking in photography. We work with established photographic artists to enable the production of new work and the exchange of ideas. In addition we also identify and support emerging talent, mentoring a new generation of photographers through our commissioning and advice programmes. NEPN’s major project of 2012/2013 was the development and delivery of the region’s first international photography festival, The Social: Encountering Photography.

Since our launch we have established a wider national and international profile for our programme and we continue to act as an influential agency for photographers and lens-based artists.

NEPN is funded by the University of Sunderland. Our current project is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

NEPN is the recipient of a national award in recognition of its work in connecting pedagogy and professional practice, engaging students of the Northern Centre of Photography with the photographic and wider cultural sector and NEPN’s offer. The Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence was awarded by the Higher Education Academy.

NEPN is a member of the North East Contemporary Visual Arts Network (CVAN).