Meet the festival team

The Cork Photo team curates exhibitions by emerging visual artists, showcased in our festival hubs. We bring together independent galleries, arts organisations, individuals and collectives; producing a festival guide with online representation.  A series of photo related events are coordinated to include screenings, talks, portfolio reviews, photo gatherings and launches.

Louise Maher began her studies at St John’s Central College, Cork and received a BA Hons Degree in Photography from Edinburgh College of Art in 2006.  Her series have been widely exhibited and published. In 2011, she completed an MA in Photography at the University of Brighton.  She is co-founder of Cork Photo Festival & Gallery and is currently experimenting with new ways to engage with past works.


Naomi Smith is a photographer who gets excited about developing collaborative projects. Born on the Isle of Man she now lives by the sea in East Cork. Graduating from St John’s Central College in 2006, she went on to open The Darkroom a public photographic resource in Cork City. As Co-founder of Cork Photo Festival & Gallery Naomi currently enjoys working in the gallery and developing personal projects.



Izabela Szczutkowska was born in Wrocław, Poland. Specialising in analogue photography and darkroom printing she graduated from St. John’s College, Cork in 2012. Recognised for her uniquely dark approach to portraiture and landscapes, she has built up an impressive portfolio of national and international collaborations. Her time in Ireland has seen her working closely with a number of Irish musicians and artists as well as curating exhibitions in cork city.

Project Coordinator

This year we are delighted to welcome Colette Lewis and Kate O’Neill.

Colette Lewis joins CPF18 as a Guest Judge and Co-Curator of Triskel 40 Photo Prize. Colette is an artist and educator working with video, photography and installation, often incorporating a collaborative process engaged with place and social context. She studied Sculpture in LSAD and in 2010 received an MA in Visual Art Practices from Dun Laoghaire IADT. For many years Colette has been involved in the running and programming of artist-led spaces currently a Director in the Cork Artists Collective and founder member of The Guesthouse project.

Guest Judge & Co-Curator

Kate O’Neill Joins CPF18 as Guest Curator of ELASTIC at St Peter’s Church. Kate has been working in the photography industry for over 12 years supporting visual artists via exhibitions, professional practise lectures, workshops and mentor-ships. As Director of TheOGC – a platform supporting women across the visual arts- Kate is editor of the online journal and host of the Close Up Talks; a series of panel events lead by women but focusing on industry issues affecting all photographers.

She is also co-founder of The Precursor Project an on-going documentary photography archive and publication- as well as Marketing & Partnerships manager at Metro Imaging, London.

Guest Curator