The LagosPhoto Festival, an international photography festival, is expanding its reach to Benin and Lagos, marking a new chapter for the festival. This year’s theme, “Ground State – Fellowship Within the Uncanny,” aims to explore the present moment while considering repair, syncope, decay, restitution and restoration. The festival will feature a special solo exhibition by artist Omar Viktor Diop, curated by Maria Pia Bernardoni.
The festival invites submissions from emerging and established artists from around the world who work with objectivity-based media, with a submission deadline of June 7, 2023. In addition, there will be a separate open call for portfolio review, with submissions limited to June 30, 2023, where selected photographers will have the opportunity to participate in festival sessions with esteemed judges and panelists, including leading gallerists, editors, educators, and experts from National Geographic, a LagosPhoto Festival partner.
The festival’s expansion offers a wider audience the opportunity to engage with the powerful work of talented photographers, challenging our own complicity in a consumer-based culture of desire. The mystique of photography has always been present, playing an important role in the rise of post-truth ideologies that encourage tribal and divided societies. The malaise of the 21st century presents troubling possibilities and anxieties stemming from post-Covid dystopian realities, increasing conflict, and the indelible signs of climate change.
As we reach a point where all that humanity knows as “common sense” no longer applies, there is an urgent need to restore, repair, and rehabilitate the mysteries of oral histories and the vital aspects for survival. For its 2023 edition, LagosPhoto Festival invites artists to present new perspectives on the rebirth and balance of humanity through hopeful visions for social, political, environmental and spiritual change.
Launched in 2010, LagosPhoto has since created a community of local and international artists united by contemporary photography encapsulating the individual experiences and identities of the African continent. With a full schedule of exhibitions, workshops and more, LagosPhoto continues to bring together emerging and established artists to celebrate the power of photography. The geographic expansion of the festival marks an exciting step for the festival as it reaches a wider audience and continues to showcase contemporary African art.