plus a 40-image collective installation, free applicants pass, and more
PhMuseum International Photo Festival is back for its third edition scheduled from 22 September to 1 October 2023 in Bologna, Italy.
The chosen theme is I Don't Know How To Respond To That, the answer that virtual assistants like Apple Siri give you when they can't find a solution to your questions. The aim is to understand our times, the dialogue between humans and machines, the development of language in a broad sense, and those issues we still have not found a solution to. Through the works on display, we will try to explore how our relationship with technology and our conditions as human beings evolve in a world characterized by continuous innovations.
We invite you to present your visual projects and share your interpretation of this year's theme. All approaches are welcome, you can also insert links to videos or installation shots in your applications. Through this open call we will select at least 4 projects for individual shows, up to 40 images for a collective installation, and up to 20 works for the projections. Plus, as applicant you can claim your free daily pass to attend the festival.
We look forward to reviewing your applications - together with a jury comprising photographers who were the protagonist of last year's edition - and to welcoming you to Bologna in September.
I am delighted to view the broad range of work up for consideration, and I am especially keen to discover new and underrepresented talents who are engaging thoughtfully with photography's technological apparatus and the fraught history thereof. Carla Liesching, Judge, PhMuseum Days 2023 Open Call
Assigned by the Main Jury
Thanks to the advisorship of last year's exhibiting artitsts Carla Liesching, Marcelo Brodsky, Sara Palmieri, the PhMuseum Team will select at least 4 projects from all the submissions to be granted an individual show within the main program of the festival. Each of the selected photographers will receive a production budget up to €2,000+VAT, plus an artist fee and a contribution to cover travel expenses and attend the inaugural weekend on 21-24 September 2023.
Assigned by the PhMuseum Team
PhMuseum Director Giuseppe Oliverio and Curator Rocco Venezia will select up to 40 images for a collective installation that will challenge the main theme of the festival: I Don't Know How To Respond To That. Eligible for this exhibition are both applicants presenting a structured body of work and those applying with a selection of images. Last year's awarded artists were presented in a collective installation in Piazza Minghetti, one of the city's main squares, and seen by thousands of people.
Assigned by the PhMuseum Team
PhMuseum Director Giuseppe Oliverio and Curator Rocco Venezia will select up to 20 projects among all of the submissions to take parte in a collective video projection that will be included in the festival's main program and screened several times over the festival's weekends.
We hope you will join us in a few months in Bologna! This is why we liked the idea to offer a free daily pass to all the open call participants. To claim it, you'll just need to present your work and confirm your attendance in a second moment.
Exhibiting Artist 2022 Edition
Carla Liesching is an interdisciplinary artist working across photography, writing, collage, sculpture, bookmaking and design. Grounded in experiences growing up in apartheid South Africa, she considers the intersections of representation, knowledge and power, with a focus on colonial histories and constructions of race and geography. Carla’s project, Good Hope, was published by MACK in 2021, and was shortlisted for the 2022 Aperture Paris Photo First Book Award, and theArles 2022 Prix du Livre in the Photo-Text Category. An excerpt from Good Hope is also featured in On Whiteness, by Self Publish Be Happy Editions.
Carla was a 2021 winner of the Open Walls Arles competition by The British Journal of Photography and exhibited work during 2021 and 2022 Rencontres d’Arles Festival. She is a 2021 LightWork Grant recipient and is the 2022 recipient of the Silver Eye Fellowship, culminating in a photo-sculptural installation in Pittsburgh, USA. Carla was recently named a 2022 Foam Talent, with exhibitions at Foam Museum in Amsterdam and the Deutsche Börse Foundation in Frankfurt. She also had a solo exhibition of Good Hope at PhMuseum in Bologna in 2022. Carla lives between South Africa and New York, where she works as a Visiting Critic in Photography at Cornell University; a Lecturer of Contemporary Art Theory at Ithaca College; and as faculty at the International Center of Photography. As part of her socially engaged practice, Carla is also a youth educator focused on image-making, visual literacy and self-publishing as vehicles for expression and empowerment.
Exhibiting Artist 2022 Edition
Marcelo Brodsky (B. 1954, Buenos Aires) is an international visual artist with work focused on visual language, memory, and human rights. His work combines text and images to convey meaning and to build up alternative narratives. In 1996-1997 he edited and exhibited the photographic essay Buena Memoria (Good Memory) based on the effects of state terrorism in Argentina. The iconic Class picture is now shown permanently in the schools main hall as part of its history. Marcelo is the founder of the Parque de la Memoria and a member of its Board. The park is a large monument and art exhibition space to honor and remember the victims of Argentina’s military dictatorship. He is also the founder of Visual Action, an NGO dedicated to transferring visual expertise to NGOs.
Major works and photobooks include Buena Memoria, Nexo, Memory under construction, Once@9:53, Visual Correspondences, Tree time, and 1968 The Fire of Ideas, which was shown extensively in Europe and Latin America at the Lyon Biennale (France), the UNAM University Museum of Tlatelolco (Mexico), the Itau Foundation Photography Forum (Brazil), and Rencontres d’Arles (France) among many others. His latest work on 1968 is an Opera in collaboration with a musician and a drama director, commissioned by Teatro Colon of Buenos Aires that premiered in December 2018. His work is in the collections of the Tate Modern (London) The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Pinacoteca del Estado (Sao Paulo), the National Museum of Fine Arts (Argentina) among others. Awards include the 2008 B’nai Brith award for Human Rights and the Dr. Jean Mayer award for his human rights and artistic work by Tufts University, Boston, USA.
Exhibiting Artist 2022 Edition
Sara Palmieri is a visual artist, curator and teacher who lives and works in Rome. After an MA and background in architecture, she focused her interest on photography as the main tool to investigate the perception of time and memory through their resonance on the space we inhabit, and as a starting point to question the forms of reality, to show the fragility of its certainties. With the introduction of sculpture, performance and installation both in the creative process and in the exhibition of the final work, she invites the viewer to enter a new possible scenario, to overturn the perspective from which we observe things and to abandon the usual codes of reference.
Sara’s work is shown nationally and internationally in group and solo exhibitions including PhMuseum Days (2022), Fonderia 20.9 (2021), Plenum Gallery (2019), Istanbul Biennal (2019), Matèria Gallery (2018), Fotohaus ParisBerlin Gallery Arles (2017). Among the recognitions, she is the recipient of the Marco Bastianelli Award 2016 for the best self-published Italian photographic book, winner of the Urbanautica Insitute Awards in 2020 and finalist of the Prix Mentor and the Premio Francesco Fabbri for the Contemporary Arts in 2021. Her published work includes magazines such as The British Journal of Photography, Photoworks Annual and collective anthologies such as A Place Both Wonderful and Strange (Fuego Books), Il sangue delle donne|The blood of women (Postmedia Books). Her latest book PHENOMENA is out with DITO Publishing in October 2022.
Giuseppe Oliverio (198%) is an Italian entrepreneur and artistic director. In 2012, he launched PhMuseum, a platform for contemporary photography widely known for its grants and education program. Past recipients include artists Laura El-Tantawy, Max Pinckers, Diana Markosian, Jacob Aue Sobol, Poulomi Basu and Alejandro Cartagena.
PhMuseum is based in Bologna, Italy, where Oliverio opened the PhMuseum Lab, a multifunctional space for workshops, talks, and exhibitions, in 2020. The following year he launched PhMuseum Days, the platform’s international photography festival whose second edition counted around 10,000 visitors and 15 exhibitions.
Oliverio has served on the juries for the Lucie Photo Book Prize, Magenta Foundation’s Flash Forward, UPI’s The Fence, and Happiness OnTheMove, and regularly works as a portfolio reviewer at festivals such as Unseen, Photo Vogue Festival, and Visa Pour L’Image. He has wrote for TIME magazine and L’Uomo Vogue. He holds a degree in economics from Bocconi University (Milan) and a Master’s in Quantitative Finance from Cass Business School (London).
I am interested in the possibility of images being both a site of experimentation and a document of how technology is changing our relationship with reality and nature, and our perception of them. In particular, I will be attentive to those works that by analyzing this theme question the very concept of photography and stimulate specific installation possibilities. Sara Palmieri, Judge, PhMuseum Days 2023 Open Call
The festival will have its headquarters DumBO, a project of urban re-generation transforming a former railways deposit into a multifunctional space for the new generations. Public installations will be presented across town and in partners' galleries.
Spazio Bianco is one of DumBO's main pavilions, characterised by a post-industrial charm, which develops over 1600 sqm and three modules, communicating with each other.
Beyond the festival headquarters, we will present installations across the city of Bologna to invite you to discover its iconic historical center and the vibes of the new neighbourhoods.