PHmuseum 2021 Mobile Photography Prize - PHmuseum

2021 mobile
photography prize
Apply now

3rd edition

A reflection on identity, representation and self-representation in the digital age.

in cash prizes

Feature in a
200 images

at PHmuseum Lab

Features on
international magazines

Select and upload photos from your mobile phone, Instagram or laptop libraries.

  • Deadline

    17 June

  • Entry fee

    €20 to €30


    Until 17 June

Supported by

General Info

The online self-representation began with texts. Blogs, messaging platform, tweets. Later, social media posts started to support a certain need to express ourselves and engage with larger audiences. A clear visual shift, which started soon after mobile devices became the main vehicle through which we document our everyday life and shape our digital representation.

With part of the Generation Z (born 1997-2012) and the whole Generation Alpha (early 2010 - mid-2020s) being the first people in human history to have full consciousness of their image and own portrayal since a very young age, how mobile phones and the digital environment are influencing the perception of the self and the way we live? How mobile phones are mediating our identity through images or simply shaping our persona? What does it mean “to be present” in a digital world base on representation?

With this open call, we wish to reflect on these relevant aspects and find images on identity, representation and self-representation in the era of mobile devices. We are looking for photographs that could help us document and understand this constantly evolving phenomenon and provoke new reflection to understand how the millenary human fascination for representation and self-representation is approaching this digital age.


€4500 Photos Of The Year /

Judges Alana Celii, Sara Urbaez, Cristian Rahadiansyah and Cindy Sissokho will review all the submissions to assign the 3 main prizes and select up to 9 mentions.

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1st Prize / €2,300
2nd Prize / €1,300
3rd Prize / €900
Up to 9 mentions

200 Images Photo Book /

PHmuseum's Team will select up to 200 images that will be published in a limited edition curated photobook. The publication will be the third title of a series of volumes aimed at exploring the phenomenon of mobile photography after Familiar Stranger and INSIDE.

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Collective Exhibition in Italy + Book Presentation /

Awarded by PHmuseum

PHmuseum's Team will curate a collective exhibition at PHmuseum LAB in Bologna, Italy in April 2022. The event will be accompanied by the book presentation.

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Collective Feature on BuzzFeed News /

Awarded by BuzzFeed

Kate Bubacz, Photo Director at BuzzFeed, will handpick a selection of photographs from the open call to be published on BuzzFeed News, a global news organization providing original online reporting and video programming across Netflix, Facebook Watch, Twitter, Snapchat, and more.

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Online Publications on C41 Magazine /

Awarded by C41

C41 Magazine will pick its favourite photographs from the contest submissions and share them in a collective feature on their website.

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Collective Feature on The Smart View /

Awarded by The Smart View

TSV is an independent magazine showcasing the works of international mobile photographers. Editor and founder Rosa Roth will select up to 10 images among all of the submissions who will be granted a group feature on their Instagram channels.

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Online Collective Feature on GUP Magazine /

Awarded by GUP Magazine

Since 2005, GUP Magazine aims to connect communities around contemporary art and documentary photography. Their Editorial Team will choose up to 10 photographers among all of the applicants who will be granted an online collective feature on their Magazine.

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Up to 40 finalists /

Each judge from the main panel will select 10 images that will be taken into consideration for the Mobile Photos of The Year. The images will have a dedicated announcement and promotion on PHmuseum's social media channels.

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What we did in the last years

This open call is meant to be inclusive and stimulate a reflection on how mobile photography is influencing the medium and becoming part of our everyday life. Join our collective project as many professional and amateur photographers did during the last 2 editions.

INSIDE Opened A New Cycle Of Exhibitions At PHmuseum Lab

Last week we inaugurated the second show arising from our Mobile Photography Prize. It documents the first wave of the pandemic from an introspective point of view and it marks the re-opening of our gallery in Bologna, Italy.

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Our second book on mobile photography

Featuring 200 images from the 2021 open call, INSIDE is the result of that collective visual reflection on the pandemic. Published in March 2021 with original texts by PHmuseum Director's Giuseppe Oliverio and Vogue Italy photo editor’s Francesca Marani, the volume is the 2nd of the series of publication on mobile photography. All the images of the current open call will be considered for the next volume, to be published in March 2022.

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A collective exhibition in Bologna, Italy during art week

More than 400 people joined us for the opening of the show co-created and produced with Spazio Labo'. The show had more than 3,000 visitors and was accompanied by a book presentation with Erik Kessels and Chiara Bardelli Nonino (Vogue Italia).

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Our first book on mobile photography

Familiar Stranger is our first photobook on the subject, featuring 200 images from the 2019 open call. Self-published in January 2021 with original texts by Erik Kessels and PHmuseum Director's Giuseppe Oliverio, the volume is the first of a series. All the images of the current open call will be considered for the next volume, to be published in January 2021.

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© Elena Haliczer Elena Haliczer

Winning the 3rd prize in the Mobile Picture of the Year gave me a major confidence boost in my artistic vision, gave me some excellent exposure, and (more prosaically), helped me pay for my graduate school. I also got to see my photograph in print in the new book of mobile photography, 'Inside', which was a true thrill. Elena Haliczer, 3rd Prize Mobile Photos of The Year 2020


Entry Fee

3 Images


Until 17 June

Upload up to 3 images to the open call


5 Images


Until 17 June

Upload up to 5 images to the open call


8 Images


Until 17 June

Upload up to 8 images to the open call

Add deadline to calendar

How it works

  • 1

    Click on
    Apply Now

    Simply click on Apply Now to start your submission and follow the guided process. You will be asked to create an account or login.

  • 2

    your photos

    Upload between 1 and 8 photos. You can select them from your Instagram account, mobile or desktop library. Images shall have been taken from a mobile device (cellphone, tablets, etc..), be in JPG or PNG format and not weigh more than 10MB each. All the resolutions are welcome. Images will be judged individually so there is no need to order them.

  • 3

    and submit

    Check all the info and submit your project, being aware that you will not be able to modify it after submission. The judges will review all entries, with winners to be announced in July 2021. To submit more images simply click again on Apply Now.

Apply now

Related articles

© Alberto Lara Alberto Lara

I submit work to prizes that are judged by acclaimed professionals, in this specific case, next to the cash prizes, I felt that the many opportunities offered like the book and the exhibition, could help me to connect with other participants and creators from different parts of the world Alberto Lara, 1st Prize Mobile Photos of The Year 2019


June 17

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