The DGPh was set up in 1951 at the instigation of Prof. L. Fritz Gruber, with the cooperation of the city of Cologne and the Association of the German Photographic Industry. Based on Cologne, the German Photographic Association (DGPh) is the ideal umbrella organisation for the photographic associations, providing a top-level forum for all cultural questions associated with photography and with other related visual-media.
It brings together leading and outstanding personalities in the photographic world for the important purpose of promotion the esteem in which photography is held, and its artistic and scientific applications.
Its activities include conventional methods of photography with their various parts of use in art, science, education, publicist, economy and politics, just as non conventional methods and new visual-media.
The Association is organized in different sections: “Visual”, “History”, “Science and Technology”, “Medical and Scientific Photography”, “Education and further education” and “Art, market and right”. Because of the inter-discipline structure of members and organisation it’s possible to treat respective questions in spreading fields of context.
Members are elected in recognition of their services to photography in the widest sense. At present the Association includes more than 900 members: researchers, inventors, creative photographers, journalists, doctors, teachers, organizers, scientists, managers and economics.
At least the way the German Photographic Association sees itself as a representative organ for presentation and for imparting of signposting photographic work in public.
The Association arranges exhibitions, technical talks and conferences, and develops initiatives in cultural, scientific and political areas. The DGPh has found prizes and awards for personage and institutions. The awarded have distinguished themselves in a exceptional manner by means their effective visual, scientific, journalistic or social work.
The Associations “Cultural prize” is awarded to those who have rendered particular service to photography in artist, scientific or promotional fields. The “Dr. Erich Salomon Prize” honours media and photographers for outstanding applications of photography to publicity work.