PHmuseum Days 2021 Photo Festival Open Call - PhMuseum

PHmuseum Days 2021
Photo Festival Open Call
See results

© Samuel Fordham

A sincere thanks to all the applicants and supporters of this edition!

Want to get notified of the coming open calls?

Supported by


Solo show at PhMuseum Days 2021

Fading Senses

by Ligia Popławska

Selected by the main Jury, the work is granted an individual exhibition at PhMuseum Days 2021. Including travel and accommodation to Bologna and promotion on PhMuseum.

Solo show at PhMuseum Days 2021


by Fabiola Cedillo

Selected by the main Jury, the work is granted an individual exhibition at PhMuseum Days 2021. Including travel and accommodation to Bologna and promotion on PhMuseum.

Solo show at PhMuseum Days 2021


by Samuel Fordham

Selected by the main Jury, the work is granted an individual exhibition at PhMuseum Days 2021. Including travel and accommodation to Bologna and promotion on PhMuseum.

Collective Show at PhMuseum Days 2021 /

These images will take part in the A New Beginning collective installation, which is part of the official exhibition's program together with the festival's individual shows.


1st Prize

Poulomi Basu

What can stimulate more conversations, controversies and reflections than an image pretending to summarize the issues, trends and energy of a year? To your mobile devices and to the judges' opinion the difficult sentence.

"PhMuseum's Team will select around 200 images that will be published in a limited edition book. The publication will be the first one of a series of volumes that will be released on an annual basis with the aim of immortalize on paper the ephemeral images describing the phenomenon of the last few years."

Poulomi Basu, judge of the PHM 2018

© Poulomi Basu


© Ligia Popławska Ligia Popławska

Ligia Popławska’s “Fading Senses” explores the emotional and mental implications on individuals from the growing disparity with their natural habitat. Her photographs are meditative and consistent, gesturing something is about to happen or has just happened, leaving the viewer wondering, dreaming, fearing — altogether making this work both tempting and appealing to engage with time and time again. Laura El Tantawy, Judge, PHmuseum Days 2021 Photo Festival Open Call


A New Beginning

Yes, we are organizing an international photography festival! It's called PHmuseum Days, it will happen on 23-26 September 2021 in Bologna, Italy and we are inviting you to become part of it.

The PHmuseum Days 2021 will be the beginning of a new era for our project, characterised by a stronger sense of community and sharing. Photography intended as a universal language can be a powerful medium to transmit important messages, and our goal is to give life to the right platforms to display it. For this reason, after 9 years of online activities we decided to make the big step into the real world and offer our community also a physical playground to meet up, learn and exchange ideas.

The starting point of this initiative is this open call whose theme is A New Beginning, which represents both the dawn of a new adventure for PHmuseum and, most importantly, an occasion to rethink together the decade that just started. We are selecting 3 works for individual shows, up to 40 images for a collective installation and up to 15 projects for the projections' night. Furthermore, all the applicants will be granted a free festival pass that we hope will be a good excuse to come over and enjoy a long weekend of photography and much more.

Thank you for your consideration and support, we enjoyed reviewing all the submitted works and look forward to meeting you in a few months in Bologna!

© Fabiola Cedillo Fabiola Cedillo

Through a reflective curiosity, "Human" by Fabiola Cedillo explores the current natural and technological methods in place for human reproduction. By combining images that address those experiences the work makes us question with a political and sometimes philosophical intention the needs, consequences, origins and potential implications of Assisted Human Reproduction Techniques. Lua Ribeira, Judge, PHmuseum Days 2021 Photo Festival Open Call


3 Individual Exhibitions
at PHmuseum Days 2021 /

Assigned by the Main Jury

A panel composed of Lua Ribeira, Giuseppe Oliverio, Laura El Tantawy and Rocco Venezia selected 3 projects from all the submissions to be granted an individual exhibition within the main program of the festival.

Each of the selected photographers will receive a production budget, plus travel and accomodation expenses to attend the main weekend on 23-26 September.

Eligible for the prize were complete or ongoing projects that challenge the theme of the festival: A New Beginning.

A 40-Image Collective Show
at PHmuseum Days 2021 /

Assigned by the Main Jury

A panel composed of Lua Ribeira, Giuseppe Oliverio, Laura El Tantawy and Rocco Venezia will select up to 40 images for a collective installation that will challenge the main theme of the festival: A New Beginning.

Eligible for this exhibition are both applicants presenting a structured body of work and those applying with a selection of images on the festival theme.

A Collective Projection
of 15 works /

Assigned by the PHmuseum Team

PHmuseum's Director Giuseppe Oliverio and Curator Rocco Venezia will select up to 15 projects among all of the submissions to compose the thematic video projection which will be presented during the festival's main screening night.

Free Festival Pass
to all the applicants /

We hope the conditions will allow us to see you all in a few months in Bologna, this is why we liked the idea to grant all the open call participants with a free festvial pass.

© Samuel Fordham Samuel Fordham

Samuel Fordham's C-R92/BY is a meditation on long-distance emotional relationships which are held up thanks to technology and how severe migratory policy from certain countries affect them. His project generates a deeper reflection on a world where more and more our presence is given by two-dimensional images shared on screens while new forms of relationships are introduced, mostly characterised by physical absence. Rocco Venezia, Judge, PHmuseum Days 2021 Photo Festival Open Call


  • Lua Ribeira

    Lua Ribeira

    Photographer & Magnum Photos Associate Member


    Lua Ribeira’s practice is characterized by its collaborative nature, extensive research and an immersive approach to her subject matter. She is interested in using the photographic medium as a means to create encounters that establish relationships and question structural separations between people.

    Ribeira was born in 1986, in Galicia, northern Spain. She graduated in Graphic Design at BAU School of Design, Barcelona in 2011, and earned a first-class honours in a BA in Documentary Photography from the University of South Wales in 2016. Since graduating, she has continued her academic engagement as a guest lecturer at various universities, including the University of Westminster, University of the West of England, and Complutense University of Madrid.

    Ribeira’s work has received several awards and honors, including the Firecracker Grant for Women in Photography, and the Jerwood/Photoworks award. Her work has been published in book form by Fishbar, London in 2017, features in the publication Firecrackers: Female Photographer Now published by Thames and Hudson in 2017, in and Raw View Magazine‘s, “Women looking at Women” in 2016. Her work has been exhibited internationally in both solo and group shows in venues including Impressions Gallery, Bradford, Ffotogallery Cardiff, Belfast Exposed Gallery, Beijing International Photography Biennale, and many more. Other publications Ribeira’s work has been featured in include the British Journal of Photography, Paper Journal, Refinery 21, AnOther, and Tate magazine. Selected commercial clients include Chanel, Carla Lopez handbags, Birmingham Botanical Gardens, and Wire Magazine.

    She joined Magnum Photos as a nominee in 2018.

  • Giuseppe Oliverio

    Giuseppe Oliverio

    PHmuseum Founder and Director


    Giuseppe Oliverio (Bologna, 1985) is an Italian cultural entrepreneur.

    In 2012 he launched PHmuseum, an international network dedicated to contemporary photography known for its grants program and online education offering. The platform nowadays features the work of more than 50,000 photographers and represents a relevant archive for curators and photo editors worldwide.

    Giuseppe has been in the jury of international awards like Magenta Foundation’s Flash Forward, Gomma Grant, United Photo Industry’s The Fence, Cortona's Happiness Onthemove, Blow Up Press Book Award and Lucie Foundation Photo Book Award. He regularly works as portfolio reviewer at international festivals like Photo Vogue Festival, Unseen, and Visa pour l’Image and has written for magazines like TIME and L'Uomo Vogue.

    Giuseppe also coordinates PHmuseum's book publishing - Inside is the latest title - and PHmuseum's documentaries. His first short movie, A Conscious Dream, was selected to 12 film festivals across Europe, USA and Latin America and awarded best documentary short at 2016 Manchester International Film Festival. His second project, A Land, further premiered at film festivals worldwide.

    Recently he co-founded the PHmuseum Lab, an exhibition and education venue in Bologna, Italy.

  • Laura El Tantawy

    Laura El Tantawy

    Documentary Photographer & Canon Ambassador


    Laura El-Tantawy is an award winning British/Egyptian documentary photographer, artful book maker & mentor. She is a Canon Ambassador, representing the global camera giant’s vision & passion for visual storytelling. Born in Ronskwood in Worcestershire, UK, Laura studied in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the US & UK. Living between East and West for much of her life inspires her work, which contemplates notions of home & belonging through exploring social & environmental issues pertinent to her background. Her photography is recognised for its characteristically painterly & lyrical eye on reality.

    Laura started her career as a newspaper photographer in the United States. She turned freelance in 2005, moving to Cairo and starting what became her seminal body of work In the Shadow of the Pyramids. Laura is the first Egyptian and Arab to be awarded the prestigious W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund award, which she received for her long-term series I’ll Die For You. The award honours photographers whose work follows the tradition of W. Eugene Smith's humanistic photography & dedicated compassion. In 2016, she was among the four artists nominated for the prestigious Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize, awarded annually to a photographer who made the most significant contribution to the photographic medium in Europe during the past year. Her work has been published in The New Yorker, Afar, Le Monde, Wall Street Journal, National Geographic, Time, New York Times, Huck & Foam.

    In 2020, Laura joined Canon’s global Ambassador Programme. Joining a global roster of more than 100 visual professionals, she represents the future of visual storytelling, Canon's unique brand & “its silent heroes — the staff & visionary engineers who make my work possible” she said. Laura prides herself on her independent identity as a visual creative. Her goal as an artist is to produce socially engaged, unique and thought-provoking work. She often collaborates with like-minded individuals, institutions & organisations driven to inform responsibly, contribute positive change to the world & encourage stimulating thought & creativity.

  • Rocco Venezia

    Rocco Venezia

    Photographer & PHmuseum Curator


    Rocco Venezia is a visual artist and works as a curator for PHmuseum.

    Venezia has exhibited his personal work in solo shows at VOID (Greece) and JEST (Italy), while he was displayed in group exhibitions at Fondazione Fabbri (Italy), Capa Photography Center (Hungary), ISSP Gallery (Latvia) and Gallery Image (Denmark). His project Nekyia is a book published by the Italian independent editor Witty Kiwi in 2017, the monograph is part of the collection at the National Art Library of Victoria & Albert Museum in London. His latest work - Is Life Under The Sun Not Just a Dream - started in 2018 and developed under the European Program Parallel Platform, by which he has been selected as second cycle emerging artists.

    Next to his personal practice, Venezia works as a curator and producer for PHmuseum since 2017, in synergy with platform's director Giuseppe Oliverio, he develops educational activities, the editorial line and the curatorial activities of the online community. Lately, he has worked on the concept and editing of the two collective publications by PHmuseum - Familiar Stranger (2020) and Inside (2021).

    He is the co-founder of PHmuseum Lab, a photographic hub based in Bologna.