There is nothing more serious than playing. During childhood, play is synonymous with freedom, a fantasy world beyond the power of adults where everything is possible and reality is suspended. A world without laws. But it is also by playing that we learn to respect the rules; those imposed from outside because that’s the way you play this game, or those that we invent because you can also play the game this way. We learn the basic rules of coexistence, how to play on a team or play alone, to lose or win, to obey others or negotiate with them. It is the great testing ground in which we rehearse what is to come.
As adults, we resign ourselves to the fact that the game is over. We convince ourselves that we no longer like it, or that we don’t need it. We only accept it covertly in other types of activities, such as some sports, in which we unleash ourselves without restraint, whether playing or watching others; or certain arts, where we allow ourselves brief forays into the fun side of life or beyond reality (and it is no coincidence that some languages preserve the synonymy between playing and acting). We also tolerate microdoses of board games, although always with an excuse (at Christmas or in cases of terrible boredom such as a trip without a phone or something that resembles the end of the world). There are games that survive in youth subcultures, such as role-playing games or cosplay, but, apparently, no one who does not want to see their maturity questioned enters these territories. And of course there are the so-called “games of chance”, although we wonder if they should not simply be called betting. Outside these limits, in the subdued world of adults, playfulness has no right to exist.
In Getxophoto 2024, we are looking for proposals from the field of image and photography that explore games and playing from these points of view and from many others that have not occurred to us.
Shall we play?
The winning artists will benefit from:
An international jury will decide on the winning projects by mutual agreement, taking into account artistic criteria, the conceptual development of the submitted work, as well as its relation and appropriateness to the proposed theme. Criteria of gender parity and inclusion will also be taken into account. The jury's decision will be final.
Getxophoto International Image Festival has been held in Getxo (Basque Country, Spain) for 17 years. The Festival brings to the city different proposals from visual artists from all over the world, establishing a contemporary conversation on the proposed theme each year. Getxophoto is characterised by the radical defence of public space (physical and online) as a meeting place, a place of mutual recognition and a field for experimentation, play and celebration in the face of its homogenization and privatisation. For this reason, most of its programme is made up of open-air installations, highlighting, on the one hand, the link between the image and the environment and, on the other, generating a more horizontal and participatory relationship with the public. From its transversal approach, Getxophoto has been expanding through the promotion of the Internet as a space for the development of visual culture. To this end, it runs an online programme that has included different approaches such as automated live processes, interactive websites, podcasts, apps, memes or WhatsApp groups among other proposals.
The Festival will celebrate its 18th edition in June 2024 and has featured critically acclaimed artists such as Alessandra Sanguinetti; Cristina De Middel; Takashi Homma; Penelope Umbrico; Marcos López; Hannah Collins; Ricardo Cases; Martin Schoeller; Nadav Kander; Cortis & Sonderegger; Phil Toledano; John Hilliard; Juno Calypso; Joy Buolamwini; Wang Qingsong; Roger Ballen; Thomas Mailaender; Mishka Henner; Pieter Hugo; Maija Tami; Jacques-Henri Lartigue; Paul Fusco; Simon Norfolk; Zanele Muholi; Yann Gross; Mentalgassi; Ilyes Griyeb; Clare Strand; Randa Maroufi, Michael Wolf; Leonard Suryajaya or Sofía Crespo, among many others. For more information, visit getxophoto.com
This call is carried out in collaboration with Picter platform.
Please feel free to contact us.