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What is PHotoESPAÑA?

What is PHotoESPAÑA

PHotoESPAÑA was born in June 1998 with the aim of being a photography festival carried out by society. Promoted by the Contemporary Foundation and organized by La Fábrica, PHotoESPAÑA makes Madrid and Spain become each year a meeting point for the world of Photography. A festival designed and made in Spain, which has become an international reference thanks to the work and involvement of specialists and agents from the artistic, cultural, and political fields, the collaboration of institutions and the participation of the public.

The Festival has always had a international vision, directing his gaze to large artistic territories: Europe, North America, Latin America, the Far East, etc. However, Spanish photography has always had a relevant role in PHotoESPAÑA, whose intention is to present a panorama that accounts for its richness, energy and plurality. The seventeenth edition, in 2014, was entirely dedicated to the evolution of Spanish photography from the XNUMXth century to the present, highlighting the work of young creators who are contributing new ways of looking at photography and who enjoy an important international echo .

One of the most personal characteristics of the Festival is the choice of a general commissioner who is in charge of programming for three consecutive years. Three years are enough to develop theories and concepts around the photographic fact. The curators who have worked for PHotoESPAÑA so far have been:

PHE98 . Inland expeditions. General curator: Alejandro Castellote
PHE99. Hot blood. General curator: Alejandro Castellote
PHE00. Borders. General curator: Alejandro Castellote
PHE01. From the south. General curator: Oliva María Rubio
PHE02. Female General curator: Oliva María Rubio
PHE03. U.S. Identity and alterity. General curator: Oliva María Rubio
PHE04. Stories. General curator: Horacio Fernández
PHE05. Town. General curator: Horacio Fernández
PHE06. Nature. General curator: Horacio Fernández
PHE07. 10 years. Collective curating
PHE08. Place. General curator: Sérgio Mah
PHE09. The everyday. General curator: Sérgio Mah
PHE10. Weather. General curator: Sérgio Mah
PHE11. Interfaces. Portrait and communication. General curator: Gerardo Mosquera
PHE12. From here. Context and internalization. General curator: Gerardo Mosquera
PHE13. Body. Eros and politics. General curator: Gerardo Mosquera
PHE14. See you. Spanish photography. Collective curating
PHE15. See you here. Latin American photography. Collective curating
PHE16. Europe. European photography. Collective curating
PHE17. The exaltation of being. Alberto García Alix. White card. XNUMXth Anniversary
PHE18. Players. Cristina de Middel. White card. XNUMXth Anniversary
PHE19. Deja vu? Susan Bright. Guest Curator
PHE20. Resilience
PHE21. against the race


The Festival was born in Madrid, but throughout its journey it has had presence in: Albacete, Badajoz, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Guadalajara, Santander, Segovia, Toledo, Zaragoza and Castilla la Mancha. Also in international headquarters in different countries such as: Slovakia, Finland, France, Ireland, Latvia, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Russia and Turkey. Among them, centers such as Le Jeu de Paume in Paris or the Nederlands Fotomuseum in Rotterdam.

In the 24 years of the Festival's life, more than 1.300 exhibitions (between individuals and groups) to show the work of more than 3.000 national and international artists such as Helena Almeida, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Bae Bien-U, Karl Blossfeldt, Edward Burtynsky, Javier Campano, Ana Casas Broda, Francesc Català-Roca, Tony Catany, Matías Costa, Mario Cravo Neto, Gabriel Cualladó, Ricky Dávila, Philip- Lorca diCorcia, Rineke Dijkstra, William Eggleston, Olafur Eliasson, Elliot Erwitt, Joan Fontcuberta, William Henry Fox Talbot, Robert Frank, Alberto García-Alix, Daniel García Andujar, Cristina García Rodero, Pablo Genovés, Nan Goldin, Pierre Gonnord, Luis González Palma, Paul Graham, Andreas Gursky, Cristobal Hara, Kimsooja, Josef Koudelka, Sol LeWitt, Chema Madoz, Man Ray, Sally Mann, Ramón Masats, Oriol Maspons, Susan Meiselas, Enrique Metinides, Helmut Newton, José Ortiz Echague, Max Pam, Martin Parr, Irving Penn, Humberto Rivas, Sebastião Salgado, August Sander, Antonio Saura, Andrés Serrano, Stephen Shore, Malick Sidibé, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Wolfgang Tillmans, Miguel Trillo, Joel-Peter Witkin or Francesca Woodman.

The Festival guides published throughout these 19 years, they have become a collector's item for visitors. In 2007 a 'Dictionary of photographers. 1998-2007 ' which included the more than 200 authors who had had individual exhibitions in the official section for the first 10 years. Factory, in addition, he has edited more than 100 exhibition catalogs both collective and monographic, which give a continuous presence to the Festival in another medium and which reach an innumerable audience through our distribution networks, both national and international.

The PHotoESPAÑA awards They reward artists, specialists and entities linked to the world of photography. The Festival recognizes professional excellence and contributions to the environment.
The highest award of the Festival, PHE Award, recognizes the trajectory of an international figure in photography.
The Bartolomé Ros Award points out the contribution of a Spanish personality to the world of photography in any of its areas.
Newcomer Photographer Award: Chosen by nomination, it values ​​the Spanish photographer under 35 years of age who stands out the most during the year before the Festival.
Discoveries Award: An international jury made up of photography specialists chooses the best of the works submitted to the PHE Discoveries portfolio viewing.
Audience Award: Visitors choose which is, in their opinion, the best sample of the Festival.
Festival Off Award: rewards one of the galleries of the Off Festival for the approach to the exhibition, the artistic value of the authors and the works on display, as well as the gallery's effort to present a specific project for PHotoEspaña.
The Festival wants to recognize the important role that the publishing industry has as a means of disseminating photography. Since 1998, PHotoEspaña has distinguished the most outstanding photography book of the year. As of 2007, people vote in three different categories: Best Book of the Year in national and international category and Featured Publisher of the Year. In 2015 a new category was added: Best Self-published Photography Book Award.
From 2008 to 2014, PHotoEspaña and the photography magazine OjodePez joined forces to award the PHotoEspaña OjodePez Award for Human Values.

Throughout its journey, PHotoESPAÑA has collaborated with institutions, public administrations, foundations, companies, museums, art centers and practically all art galleries in Madrid. The more than 400 institutions and centers with which the Festival has collaborated culturally can be consulted in the section History of sponsors of our website.

PHotoESPAÑA is, above all, a festival made by and for society. Together with the exhibitions, various activities open to the general public, that make the Festival a total event. Workshops, seminars, portfolio viewings, meetings, conferences, photo projections, film series and even marathons complete the content of the Festival.

For the professional photography sector, PHotoESPAÑA has become an essential meeting point. The Festival is, since 2003, a platform for professional exchange and debate about photography in contemporary art, approached by prominent artists and professionals from each field, both nationally and internationally. The activities for professionals that are organized each year are the PHE campus y Discoveries Regarding professional initiatives, PHotoESPAÑA also has Transatlantic, forum for photography and visual arts in America that emerged in 2008, and the PHE Master and PIC.A. School

In 2014, the Ministry of Culture recognized with the Gold Medal for Merit in Fine Arts the importance of a festival that, in recent years, has become a true benchmark for the world of international photography. This Gold Medal not only recognizes a collective effort, it is also a magnificent award for the photography sector and for all those who are passionate about the image. This award also recognizes the ability of the Festival to turn photography into an authentic event and transmit it to the whole of society.

The 20th Anniversary celebration It was carried out in the years 2017 and 2018. This anniversary was recognized by the Government of Spain, as an event of exceptional public interest.

PHotoESPAÑA look at the past, the present and what is shaping up as the future. The national in continuous coexistence with the international. Fully consecrated names along with others hitherto unknown. A sum of points of view that, from each one of them in particular, contributes a vision, a unique, different and new version of the Festival.