There is something that I always found irritating, and that is most photography festivals, competitions and whatever guides to emerging photography. The month prior to the submission deadline they send you about 25 emails, presenting themselves as the best opportunity for young talented creative minds, while telling you that their deadline has been ulteriorly extended and that you are still in time to apply.  Of course, you find out that there is a fee to submit your work. I am not going to name drop, but the last one “major opportunity for young artists” I received wanted $15 per image. They also kindly gave me the flat rate of $85 for 20 images. If I would have applied to one out of two competitions/festivals of interest I would have already spent $545.00 this year alone. What a great concept! Helping out young struggling artists by asking them money, and taking this money away from their actual work. Isn’t that a fucking paradox?!
Of course producing a festival requires big investments, and perhaps their marketing department is not doing so well in finding sponsors. But are the young artists themselves the people who should pay?
These are open ended questions. However young artists and photographers tend to be broke most of the time. And we like to spend the little money we have on our own actual work. It allows us to achieve exactly what we want. So, I personally say “fuck this bullshit!”

 

Luckily there is Hyeres Festival, that a part from being one of the best curated festivals around is also free of charge.
The Festival grants creative young talents a unique opportunity to exhibit their work, confront points of view with their peers, and, first and foremost, defend their photographic portafolios in a one-to-one dialogue with art directors, managers of galleries and art institutions, established photographers and a wide variety of professionals working with images (agents, brand representatives, etc.). Past Festival jurors included Urs Stahel (Fotomuseum Winterthur), Marloes Krijnen (FOAM, Amsterdam), Dennis Freedman (W, New York), Charlotte Cotton, Glenn O’Brien, Mark Sanders (Another Magazine, London), Marta Gili (Jeu de Paume, Paris), Jörg Koch (032C, Berlin), Frits Gierstberg (Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam), Kathy Ryan (The New York Times, New York), William Ewing (Musée de l’Élysée, Lausanne), Oliviero Toscani, Erik Kessels (KesselsKramer, Amsterdam)
Some good people showed their work at Hyeres, from some of the most successful fashion photographers around (Sølve Sundsbø) to younger impressive artists such as Linus Bill, Matthieu Lavanchy and Anouk Kruithoff.

The 27th International Festival of Fashion & Photography will take place April 27-30, with the exhibitions lasting until the 27th of May. The application deadline is the 15th of November 2011, aka in a month time. For info on how to apply click here

 

Images From Top To Bottom; Linus Bill, Matthieu Lavinchy and Anouk Kruithof.