The finalists of the Rovinj Photodays Festival were announced a few days ago. It’s a manifestation that’s slowly but surely becoming the most relevant domestic photography competition by offering an annual glimpse into high-quality contemporary photographic production in Croatia.
In its first editions, Rovinj Photodays might’ve been a bit unclear in terms of context, somewhat uncertain about the direction the manifestation was looking to take; but for the last two years, thanks to better defined official categories, and a truly relevant and strong international panel of judges; it has definitely risen to a new level thus winning the epithet of the most important domestic photography award, and rightly so.
All of the above is also true for this year’s edition, edition number five; although at least as far as the quality of the chosen finalists goes, some credit should also go to the international panel of judges headed by Hrvoje Slovenc, a Croatian photographer living in New York. Slovenc was last year’s winner at Photodays in the Artistic Concept Category (more information here); which automatically made him President of the Panel of Judges this year.
8.500 photographs competing for nominations this year is a truly impressive number; however, it should be taken with a grain of salt, seeing as there’s no entry fee for application; there are no prerequisites needed in terms of expertise, a membership in a professional association, or any type of specific education in the field of photography for applying authors. This of course isn’t a negative aspect, but it does generate quantity.
Among the nominees are the well-known names of Croatian photography (Abadžić, Skledar, Vitaljić, Decker&Kutić…); a generation of young authors from the Academy of Dramatic Art (the ADU) and other young authors that have been systematically presenting and exhibiting their works in Zagreb over the last years (Glogoški, Mrša, Bajc, Vukosav, Kalkan…); as well as a number of new names in photography (Gabud, Pućić, Lujić, Bubola…).
Such a wide range of authors looking to win an award should effectively mean that what matters at Rovinj Photodays is talent and quality of competing items; and not a list of awards, education, or exhibitions the author has taken part in; which is undoubtedly highly commendable.
Some individuals we’ve had the pleasure of interviewing for comeandcheck.it are also among the nominees: Bruna Kazinoti – traditionally nominated in the Fashion Category (click here to check out our interview with Bruna); Krešimir Zadravec – street chronicler of modern-day Zagreb (nominee in the Documentary Photography Category for his project “Zagreb Inhabitants”; click here to check out our interview with Krešimir); and Sara Perović, architect and photographer, nominee in the Publications Category for her photo fanzine “aTree”, which we’ve presented in an interview with Sara – here.
We soon hope to present projects and photographs by various other authors on our website. Until then, scroll down and check out the list of finalists accompanied by one or two photographs from the nominated series; and all the photographs of the authors listed by categories can be found here.
PORTRAITS – Nominees: Dalibor Talajić, Siniša Glogoški and Tjaša Kalkan
ARCHITECTURE – Nominees: Bojan Mrđenović, Dragan Đerfi and Mira Stanić
LANDSCAPE – Nominees: Borko Vukosav, Mario Pućić and Petra Slobodnjak
FASHION – Nominees: Toni Lujić, Bruna Kazinoti and Decker & Kutić
PUBLICATIONS – Nominees: Sara Perović, Darko Gorenak, Stanko Abadžić
APPLIED PHOTOGRAPHY – Nominees: Tomislav Može, Ivan Kelava and Vjekoslav Skledar
DOCUMENTARY PHOTOGRAPHY – Nominees: Dragan Matić, Krešimir Zadravec and Mario Topić
NUDE/BODY – Nominees: Isabella Bubola, Petra Mrša, Tea Gabud
ARTISTIC CONCEPT- Nominees: Hassan Abdelghani, Sandra Vitaljić and Maša Bajc
Young artists Siniša Glogoški, Petra Mrša and Tjaša Kalkan were awarded an honorable mention by the Panel of Judges.
As far as the Special Award for Young Authors Category is concerned, i.e. the three finalists, the President of the Panel, Hrvoje Slovenc, said: “This year’s finalists in the Young Authors Category have distinguished themselves by both the quantity and quality of their works. All the finalists have made the final cut in more than one category and all have made an impact on the Panel as promising artists with a strong desire for experimentation.
The only criterion in choosing the three young artists, as far as the Panel was concerned, was the quality of their works. Last year’s and this year’s nominations in other categories had no bearing on the final decision.”
The works of all the finalists will be made a part of the Museum of Arts and Crafts holdings and will be presented for the first time at an exhibition in Rovinj on June 1st, as one of the final parts of the Festival, where the winners will also receive their prizes and monetary awards.
More on the Rovinj Photodays can be found here.