The creation of a dummy is an integral process for any photographer with aims on publishing their own photobook. It is a visual mockup for a proposed project, created before being sent to the publishers. Organised by La Fábrica in collaboration with Photo London, the Book Dummy Award selects a entry that is renowned for its quality, uniqueness and international scope, the winners of the award will then have their dummy physically realised.
The competition encourages photographers from anywhere in the world to submit a physical copy of their dummy, under the rule that no digital copies may be entered. One winner from 20 finalist dummies will then be selected by an international jury. The winner’s work will be published with a print run of at least 1000 copies, and distributed worldwide. Photographers submit entries from all over the world, as in 2017 there were participants from 45 countries and every continent.
The winner of the 2017 edition was Iranian-born, Swiss photographer Arunà Canevascini. Nominated as one of British Journal of Photography’s Ones to Watch last year, her winning project was Villa Argentina, a body of work that visually explores the relationship between herself and her mother, an Iranian artist who was raised in Tehran.
Canevascini’s project merges themes of domesticity, femininity and migration. The result is a number of elaborately designed and surrealist images positioned within the domestic setting, and embedded with memories from the past. Through a creation of a book, she was able to further explore the meaning behind her project, as the book itself came to represent the family home in the South of Switzerland, acting as a stage for the arrangement of objects created by the author.
The book was published by La Fábrica and was presented at two of the most prestigious events in the photography calendar, Photo London in May and PHotoESPAÑA from June to August. This year’s winner will also have their work presented at the two events in 2019.
The jury for last year’s award was comprised of photography experts and curators Mónica Allende, Rodrigo Orrantia and Susan Bright, designer Fernando Gutiérrez, photographers Cristina de Middel (Spanish National Photography Award 2017) and Stephen Gill, Prix Pictet’s project manager Lisa Springer, British Journal of Photography’s editorial director Simon Bainbridge and La Fábrica’s general manager and editor Álvaro Matías. The jury for this year’s award will be announced on 5 January 2019.
As part of the prize for this year’s edition, there is the added possibility of holding an exhibition of the winning work at La Fábrica’s photography gallery in Madrid.
Calls are open to all photographers, from any country in the world, to submit a single unpublished dummy on the subject of their choice before 19 November 2018. The award has been organised by La Fábrica in collaboration with Photo London, media partner British Journal of Photography, and the printer Brizzolis.
Calls close 19 November 2018, for more information please visit: www.lafabrica.com/bookdummyaward/