The ShowOFF Section, now approaching its thirteenth edition, is a central component of the annual Krakow Photomonth Festival’s programme. With ShowOFF, we devote our attention to debuting artists who, at the beginning of their artistic path, are brimming with potential and on the cusp of being launched into a vibrant career.
The ShowOFF process begins with an open competition. Artists may submit up to two photography or film and video projects for consideration. The requirement is that these projects have never been presented, in any form, at any sort of cultural institution or event (museum, gallery, festival, etc.), including in group exhibitions. A jury made up of the 2021 edition’s curators, all specialists in the field of visual arts, will carefully select the five projects to comprise the 2021 ShowOFF Section. The winning artists will then begin working with the curators toward the final exhibited form of their project.
In 2021, the ShowOFF exhibition format will be modified. Instead of a group exhibition (the format for the past seven years), each of the five winners will have their work featured as a solo exhibition during Krakow Photomonth 2021. We believe that this refreshed format will allow each artist to really stand out to our diverse and international audience.
We are also pleased to announce that ShowOFF will be partnering with the Museum of Photography in Krakow (MuFo), which will be hosting the exhibition of one of our laureates, to be prepared in cooperation with a MuFo curator.
Artists who have made their debuts in the ShowOFF Section in recent years have appreciated the direction and expertise provided by the mentor-curators who guided them through the process of creating an exhibition from start to finish: everything from selecting photographs, to choosing formats, paper, and frames, to the final arrangement of their work on walls and in vitrines and the crafting of accompanying exhibition texts.
Looking back over the last decade-plus of ShowOFF, we are incredibly proud to have organised the debuts of artists such as Michał Łuczak, Łukasz Rusznica, Diana Lelonek, Lena Dobrowolska, Weronika Gęsicka, Valeria Cherchi, and Zosia Promińska. Most recently, 2020 laureate Oktawian Jurczykowski used his ShowOFF appearance as a springboard, presenting his project at the Wrocław TIFF festival just three months later. The career trajectories of those mentioned above, among others, have confirmed the direct connection between the mentoring and experiential elements of ShowOFF at the beginning of an artist’s career path and his or her career taking off afterwards.
We look forward to the number and quality of submissions once again exceeding our expectations, and, even in these pandemic-challenged times, for the organisation of the 13th ShowOFF Section to continue with great momentum.