FORMAT International Photography Festival announces 2021 theme: CONTROL
“If you don’t control your mind, someone else will” - Barbara Kruger
Photo by Alexandra Lethbridge
We can be in control, out of control, beyond control. Control can be passive as with a remote control or progressive as in birth control. It can offer science a control group and be an expression of power as in command and control.
We all seek to control our own lives while resisting control by others. Control has come to denote power and oppression yet we want to “take back control”.
We live in a transformative time as the COVID19 virus challenges our way of life, our economies and potentially our politics. Political control through lockdowns may have saved lives but mistrust of government propaganda has led people to take to the streets to march against the old order and protest against the prescribed colonial histories. What will the “new normal” look like?
“Who controls the past controls the future:
who controls the present controls the past”
George Orwell 
We invite you to take part in FORMAT21 by entering the Open Call with work that looks at CONTROL. We welcome a wide range of interpretations of the theme and look forward to being challenged by your ideas and approaches.
Send us your projects that involve archives, documentary and conceptual photography from all image-based genres including VR, moving image, performance and multi-media.
Both individual artists and collectives are invited to submit their work and we also encourage curators to put forward proposals based on the theme.
Open Call details:
Erik Kessels (Netherlands), Gwen Lee (Singapore), He Yining (China), Gemma Marmalade (UK), Brian Griffin (UK), Wang Peiquan & Isabella Xueke Wang(China), Azu Nwagbogu (Nigeria), Wang Baoguo (China), Fiona Shields (UK), Tanya Habjouqa (Jordan), Skinder Hundal (UK), Simon Bainbridge (UK), Tanvi Mishra (India), Emma Bowkett (UK), Anna Kucma and Stella Nantongo (Uganda), Louise Fedotov-Clements (UK), and MacDonaldStrand (Gordon MacDonald & Clare Strand) (UK)
Awards, Prizes and Opportunities
All participants selected to exhibit will receive
- A FORMAT21 bursary
- Inclusion in the FORMAT21 exhibition programme
- Featured in, and a copy of, the FORMAT21 special edition festival catalogue
- Featured on the FORMAT21 website
- 10% off tickets for selected events at FORMAT21
- 20 reduction off the FORMAT21 International Portfolio Review fee
- FORMAT21 Awards
- FORMAT21 Award, of £2000
- The Genesis Imaging Award of £1000 for print and framing services
- RPS Award selected by a RPS Honorary Fellow; a feature and interview in the award-winning RPS Journal; a mentoring session (online) with an honorary Fellow of the RPS matched to the award recipient’s photography, plus one year’s free RPS membership
- The Spectrum Imaging Award of £750 in printing services
Everyone who applies will receive
- Visibility with the FORMAT21 international jury and FORMAT curators
The opportunity to be featured on the FORMAT Festival curated Instagram feed