Open call 2017 — New Citizens

Open Call closed

We would like to take this opportunity to thank everybody for submitting their projects to this year’s Organ Vida open call on the theme of New Citizens.
All applications are now in the hands of our six international jury members and announcements on the finalists of the festival can be found at our website in late May/ early June 2017.
Also, more about the program will be announced in June 2017.
Stay tuned for exclusive details. Soon we will publish open calls for workshops, conference, and photo books!
Mark up your calendars for the Festival Opening Week in Zagreb, September 6 —10, 2017!

Greetings from the Organ Vida team!

Welcome to the Organ Vida 2017 Open Call on the theme NEW CITIZENS!
You can submit your work by filling out the application form below. Open Call fee is 30 €.
Please, read the Open Call essay written by artist Katrin Koenning before submitting your work! 



Right now, no matter where we are, we find ourselves in a fireball of political confusion that sees us descending rapidly into liberal authoritarianism, fascism and border-euphoria, and in which humanism is under grave threat. It seems all the more important then to find and draw on what connects us. United in a new and bottomless placelessness (whether physical, metaphorical or virtual), our mechanisms of exclusion and our judgement of each other are still so fiercely place-attached.

In this instalment of the festival, following on from examining Revelations, we are concerned with expanded and creative thinking around notions of New Citizen. We ask: who are we as humans? How did we come to be this way, where are we headed? What does it mean to be participant of an utterly computerised 21st Century that pulls us ever closer together, yet paradoxically, even further apart? In this era, our collective knowledge is richer than it ever was, yet we’ve lost sight of ourselves. Are we traversing an ocean of possibility while sinking under our own weight? In a world where the borders of real and imagined are incessantly blurring yet sharper than ever defined, is the very concept of belonging itself drifting away from the physical realm into another?

Perhaps New Citizen is the individual we ought to strive to be. As a species wandering dangerously close to the edge of itself, New Citizen cannot be understood as a label or fixed term. New Citizen encourages: a politic of transformation and a thinking of indefiniteness of what describes identity and ultimately us as humans; a humanity of insiders concerned about the state of a distressed world in which politicisation of space and violent legacy of white dominance have long caused the mentioned to require new balance. It is about us as a society, addressing the collective state of urgency in which we find ourselves. In this sense, New Citizen advocates a need of breaking out, of acting, of mobilising towards a new and shared horizon. The New Citizen is global more than ever, a cosmopolite; a human being most of all who always comes from story.

We are calling for the artist-communicator equipped with the power of language to show us a voice of dissent, challenging and foraging against the very things that are made by systems in power to keep us divided. We ask for your views of a New Citizen that far extend the conventional understandings of its ‘origin-definition’ which is confined to state and city and town; we ask you to think citizen as a anywhere-human, beyond entitlement, nationality or allegiance to government. Show us counter-language; a new way of navigating what it means to be alive and to live in a (post)capitalist, climate-changed 21st Century world. Whatever your photographic approach may be, show us new dialogues and new imaginaries.

We ask: who or what are we as image-makers reflecting on the world in which we live? Where are our stories of unmapping, our stories of stories?
How do we navigate this world of image and this world of World as people drawing from the toolset of communication?
What is it like to be, now, as New Citizen in this, our time? What are our responsibilities, collectively and individually, to the world and to each other, in and towards a change of course?
And what kind of boat can carry us together into the world of World that needs us less than ever?

—Katrin Koenning

The jury

Cristina de Middel | ESP

Cristina De Middel is a photographer whose work investigates photography’s ambiguous relationship to truth. Blending documentary and conceptual photographic practices, she plays with reconstructions and archetypes in order to build a more layered understanding of the subject she approaches. From her understanding of the mass media reducing the real understanding of the world we live in, her selection of subjects responds to the urgency of completing the portrait or re-launching the debate taking the potential of photography as the raw material for her story-telling. After a 10 year career as a photojournalist, Cristina stepped outside of the straight documentary gaze and produced the acclaimed series “The Afronauts” (2012), which explored the history of a failed space program in Zambia in the 1960s through staged reenactments of obscure narratives that challenged the traditional depiction of the African continent. De Middel continuously produces new bodies of work. The series This is what hatred did (2014), Sharkification (2015) and Jan Mayen (2015), to name a few examples were all published as books in 2015. In 2015 de Middel launched her own book-publishing house; This Book is True. This Book is True featuring both her own publications and supports publications of promising artists. In 2016 the second edition of The Afronauts was published. De Middel’s work has received numerous awards in both the editorial and the artistic field, including PhotoFolio Arles 2012, the Deutsche Börse Prize, POPCAP’ 13, and the Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography in New York.

Dana Lixenberg | NL

Dana Lixenberg (1964, Amsterdam) studied Photography at the London College of Printing in London (1984-1986) and at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam (1987-1989). She gained international recognition through her work for publications such as Vibe, The New Yorker, Newsweek and Rolling Stone. Her projects often focus on individuals and communities on the margins of society. These include Jeffersonville, Indiana (2005) a collection of landscapes and portraits of the small town’s homeless population and The Last Days of Shishmaref (2008), which documents an Inupiaq community on an eroding island off the coast of Alaska. Her most recent body or work is Imperial Courts (2015), a complex and evocative record of the passage of time in an underserved community in Watts, Los Angeles. Her work has been widely exhibited and can be found in prominent collections, such as Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands and FNAC, France. Her books include Imperial Courts, 1993-2015 (2015), Set Amsterdam (2011),The Last Days of Shishmaref (2008), Jeffersonville, Indiana (2005), and united states (2001). She lives in New York and Amsterdam.

Katrin Koenning | GER |

Katrin Koenning (born 1978 in Ruhr, Germany) is an Australian-German artist with a particular interest in our physical and emotional connection to place and environment. Koenning’s photographs are regularly exhibited in Australian and international solo and group exhibitions, such as “Indefinitely” (solo exhibition in Daylight Project Space in Hillsborough USA; The Lost Ones Gallery in Ballarat Australia; Athens Photo Festival, Greece) and “Dear Chris” (solo exhibition in Wallflower Photomedia Gallery in Mildura Australia; Edmund Pearce Gallery in Melbourne Australia). Group exhibitions include “Transfer”, Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney Australia, Aperture Summer Open, Aperture Gallery NYC, Renaissance Prize, Getty Images Gallery, London, UK, “This is not Detroit”, Musisches Zentrum, Bochum Germany etc. She is a former editor of the Australian PhotoJournalist Magazine and curatorial adviser for Wallflower Photomedia Gallery, Mildura. She has won numerous awards including the Conscientious Portfolio Competition and the Daylight Photo Award. In July 2016, she published her first book “Astres Noirs” (Chose Commune) at Le Bal, Paris. Koenning currently lives in Melbourne, Australia, where she practices and works as a freelance photographer and lectures photography at Photography Studies College, Melbourne.

Pieter Hugo | RSA

Pieter Hugo (born 1976 in Johannesburg, South Africa) is a photographic artist living in Cape Town. Major museum solo exhibitions have taken place at The Hague Museum of Photography, Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne, Ludwig Museum in Budapest, Fotografiska in Stockholm, MAXXI in Rome and the Institute of Modern Art Brisbane, among others. Hugo has participated in numerous group exhibitions at institutions including Tate Modern, the Folkwang Museum, Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, and the São Paulo Bienal. His work is represented in prominent public and private collections, among them the Museum of Modern Art, V&A Museum, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, J Paul Getty Museum, Walther Collection, Deutsche Börse Group, Folkwang Museum and Huis Marseille. Hugo received the Discovery Award at the Rencontres d’Arles Festival and the KLM Paul Huf Award in 2008, The Seydou Keita Award at the Rencontres de Bamako African Photography Biennial in 2011, and was shortlisted for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2012.

Leila Topić | CRO

Leila Topić (born 1972 in Zagreb) is an art historian from Zagreb. She collaborated as an independent curator on numerous exhibition projects, such as the project of Sanja Iveković “Tražim broj svoje majke” (“I'm looking for my mother's number”) for Documenta 11 in Kassel; the project “Nevidljiva skulptura” (“An invisible sculpture”) in Rorbach, Austria; the exhibition series “Neprilagođeni” (“The misfits”) by Tihomir Milovac, presented in Moscow, Skopje and Berlin; and “Pilot 04” at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb. She organized solo exhibitions of artists such as Renata Poljak, Željko Kipke, Miroslaw Balka (in collaboration with Branko Franceschi), Jasenko Rasol, Ana Opalić and Igor Kuduz; and group exhibitions such as “Video galerija” (“Video Gallery”) in a public space, “5 + - izložba nagrađivanih studenata ALU” (“5 + - the exhibition of the rewarded works of the students of the ALU”) at the Gliptoteka of HAZU, “Povratak u budućnost – 40 godina Galerije SC” (“Journey back to the future – 40 years of the SC Gallery”), or “Sustav koordinata- suvremena ruska umjetnost” (“The system of coordinates – the contemporary Russian art”) in collaboration with Tihomir Milovac at the MSU, Zagreb. From 2004 to 2006 she worked part-time at the Culture section of Vjesnik, and between 2007 and 2009 she worked as executive artist of the Art Magazin Kontura. She is the author of many prefaces to solo and group exhibitions, and the co-author of the monography about the Student Center Gallery (in collaboration with Darko Glavan). Since 2006 she has been working as curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb, and since 2008 she has been the organizer of the Media Art Collection, Photography Collection and Film and Video Collection. Since then she has realized numerous solo and group exhibitions such as “Ljubav prema riziku” (“Love towards risk”), „Stvari drugačije“(“Different things”), “Krivo srastanje” (“Growing together in the wrong way”), “5,5 na Richterovoj ljestvici” (“5,5 on the Richter Scale”), “Unutar strukture- dijalog s Ivanom Piceljom” (“Inside the structure – a dialogue with Ivan Picelj”), “Kradljivci vremena” (“Thieves of time”) (in collaboration with Jasminka Babić), and solo exhibitions of Zlatan Vehabović, Renata Poljak, Damir Žižić and Kristijan Kožul, Olivier Menanteau, Žarko Vijatović, Ana Opalić, Roger Ballen and Dalibor Martinis.

Sean O'Hagan | UK

Sean O'Hagan writes about photography for the Guardian and the Observer and is also a general feature writer. He was named interviewer of the year in the British press awards in 2003 and was the winner of the 2011 J Dudley Johnston award from the Royal Photographic Society "for major achievement in the field of photographic criticism" for his writing in the Observer and the Guardian. He has written essays for several photography books including Everything Was Moving: Photography From the Sixties and Seventies (Barbican Art Gallery), Strange and Familiar (Prestel) and Terra Nostra by Mimi Mollica (Dewi Lewis).