Introducing Summer Open
LensCulture is delighted to announce the first annual Summer Open Awards — a new concept for international photo awards designed to discover and reward 20 photographers — with a London exhibition, publication, global media exposure and cash grants.
We’re looking for work that is fresh, impactful, surprising, profound, intense, visionary. Classic or eclectic, candid or constructed, artfully poetic or hard-edged realism, we are open to all. All photographers. All ages. All topics. All genres.
Deadline: Wednesday, August 24, 2022
For photographers
  • 20 photographers / $500 grants each
  • London Exhibition
  • Featured at international photo festivals
  • Jurors
  • Michael Foley, Foley Gallery
  • Pauline Benthede, Fotografiska
  • Simon Bainbridge, Curator & Author
  • Kris Graves, Monolith Editions, +KGP
  • Arianna Rinaldi, PhEST Curator
  • Jim Casper, LensCulture
  • Images in video above by © Amber Gayle, Agnes Eperjesy, Marius Schultz, Alvin Ng, Louis Gaillard, William McDaniels, Leah Desmousseaux, Ángel J. Sanchez, Geert Broertjes & Lotte Bronsgeest, Pierre Moreau.
    Exhibition in London during Photo London 2023!
    Winning photographers will be exhibited at a gallery in London during Photo London, the premiere international photo fair that brings together hundreds of galleries, publishers and collectors, as well as an ambitious program of exhibitions, conversations, artist book signings and curated fair events.
    An opening reception will be held for LensCulture artists, invited media, photo editors and industry insiders for a night of art appreciation and networking during the world’s largest international art fair dedicated to photography.
    More Awards & Benefits
  • Features at international photo festivals.
  • Visibility with industry insiders and creative professionals
  • Permanent exhibition in LensCulture Online Gallery
  • International press exposure.
  • Meet Our Jury
    Michael Foley
    Foley Gallery
    United States

    Michael Foley opened his eponymous gallery in the fall of 2004 in New York after fourteen years of working with notable photography galleries including Fraenkel Gallery, Howard Greenberg Gallery and Yancey Richardson Gallery.

    The gallery has since been invited to participate in over thirty international and national art fairs including Paris Photo, Pulse, AIPAD, VOLTA, and the London Art Fair. Gallery exhibitions and artists have been reviewed and written about in numerous publications including The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Artforum, Modern Painters and ArtNEWS.

    Foley is the founder of The Photo Community, which offers classes and commentary on contemporary photography. He continues his interest in education by serving on the faculty of the School of Visual Arts and the International Center of Photography where he teaches and lectures on issues in contemporary photography.

    Pauline Bendthede
    Vice President of Global Exhibitions

    Pauline Benthede is the Global Director of Exhibitions at Fotografiska and Chairman of Fotografiska’s Exhibition Committee. She has worked at Fotografiska since the inauguration of Fotografiska Stockholm in 2010 and is today VP of Exhibitions for the locations in Stockholm, New York and Tallinn, as well as the future Fotografiska venues opening in 2023 in Berlin, Miami and Shanghai. She has produced, managed and/or curated a significant number of exhibitions with international artists such as Andres Serrano, David LaChapelle, Inez & Vinoodh, Hassan Hajjaj, Sarah Moon, Cooper & Gorfer, Ren Hang, Patrick Demarchelier, Martin Schoeller, Motohiko Odani, Anton Corbijn, Bettina Rheims, Isaac Julien and Sebastiao Salgado, to name a few.

    Pauline Benthede holds a degree of Bachelor of Fine Arts in photography from Gothenburg University and studied curating at Stockholm University and photography history at Umeå University.

    Simon Bainbridge
    Curator & Author
    United Kingdom

    Simon Bainbridge has spent much of his 25 years in arts journalism as editor of British Journal of Photography, taking over in 2003 and transforming the weekly trade journal into an award-winning monthly magazine. He has curated five exhibitions: Paper, Rock, Scissors: The Constructed Image in New British Photography at Flash Forward Festival 2010 in Boston (with colleague Diane Smyth); Time & Motion studies: New documentary photography beyond the decisive moment at Hereford Photography Festival 2011; Portrait of Britain (nationwide, 2016-18); and Ones To Watch at Peckham 24. He is working on two books; the first one based on the acclaimed public art project, Portrait of Britain, with Hoxton Mini Press, the other a book on portraits of artists. In additional, he has served as a judge or nominator on more than 100 photography contests, including the Deutsche Börse, Prix Pictet, Amnesty International Media Awards, ING Unseen Talent, CAP Prize and Organ Vida, and has been an expert at dozens of portfolio reviews across Europe.

    Kris Graves
    Artist & Publisher
    Monolith Editions, +KGP
    United States

    Kris Graves is an artist and publisher based in New York and California. He is founder of MONOLITH EDITIONS, a Black-owned publishing house dedicated to showcasing work from artists of color across mediums that address issues of race, identity, equity, gender, sexuality, and class.

    In his own photography, he uses a mix of conceptual and documentary practices to explore the subtleties of societal power and capitalism, among other important topics.

    Graves also sits on the board of Blue Sky Gallery: Oregon Center for the Photographic Arts, Portland; and The Architectural League of New York as Vice President of Photography.

    Arianna Rinaldo

    Arianna Rinaldo is a freelance professional who deals with wide-ranging photography. From 2012 to 2021 she was the artistic director of Cortona On The Move, an international festival of visual narratives. Since 2016 she has been the curator of photography of PhEST, a festival of photography and contemporary arts in Puglia.

    The path undertaken by Arianna in the photographic field began in 1998 as Archive Director at Magnum Photos, NY; she continued her career, back in Italy, in the role of photo editor for Colors magazine. From 2004 to 2011 she worked in Milan as an editorial consultant and curator of exhibitions and special projects. For 4 years she was a photographic consultant for D, the weekend insert of La Repubblica. For almost 10 years she was the director of OjodePez, a bilingual documentary photography quarterly published by La Fabrica in Madrid.

    Jim Casper
    The Netherlands

    Jim Casper is the editor-in-chief of LensCulture, one of the leading online destinations to discover new contemporary photography from around the world. As an active member in the contemporary photography world, Casper loves to meet with photographers and talk about photography. He curates art exhibitions, publishes books, conducts workshops, serves as an international juror, nominates photographers for key awards, and is an advisor to arts and education organizations.

    Entering photography competitions gives your work the exposure it deserves from influential jurors and the greater photo community. The possibilities are endless.
    Michael Foley, Foley Gallery & 2022 Summer Open Juror
    Competition Gallery
    Editors’ Picks
    When you enter this award, your work will be immediately reviewed by our editors. Selected submissions will be featured in our Competition Gallery and published across all of our online channels, reaching an international audience of three million. (For example, more than 600 early entries were selected and featured during our 2021 Portrait Awards, and more than 200 of those were promoted via LensCulture’s Instagram and Facebook platforms, garnering more than 430,000 likes and comments.) Enter your work early to take advantage of this incredible opportunity for global exposure!
    Note: While our editors review entries for inclusion on a daily basis, not every submission can be shown here.
    Benefits for All Who Enter
    BenefitsWinners (20)Editors‘ Picks(1)Every Entrant
    $10,000 in Cash Awards
    International Group Exhibition
    Visibility with LensCulture Insiders
    Featured in International Photo Festival Projections
    International Press Exposure
    Massive Exposure to our Global Audience of 3 Million
    LensCulture Portfolio Account(2)
    Opportunity to be in LensCulture Discoveries online directory of top-rated photographers(3)
    Share your Work with the Global Photography Community
    Opportunities for Immediate Exposure
    (1)Editors’ Picks: During the competition, LensCulture’s editors will curate hundreds of entries for immediate exposure to our global audience through the competition gallery and our Instagram and Facebook pages, all updated daily. (2)LensCulture Portfolio Account: Available for all Series entries and 5+ Single entries. (3)All LensCulture Summer Open 2022 winning photographers are automatically included in LensCulture Discoveries online directory.
    Get a written review of your work
    Enter a series or 5+ single images, and you can add a professional written review of your submission for an additional $25. This is a unique opportunity to receive valuable and specific feedback on your work from one of our experienced industry professionals.
    “This review was extraordinarily insightful and immensely helpful. Truly, I didn’t anticipate this level of attention... I am extremely encouraged.” Fred Zafran
    © Shahab Naseri
    © Terra Fondriest
    Show Us Your Work!
    Open to all types of photography: fine art, experimental, fiction, documentary, visual storytelling, portraits, landscapes, staged/constructed, street, mixed media, alternative processes, conceptual.
    Limited to one free entry per person.
    $10 for each additional photo.
    5 images are $35.
    5+ Singles
    5 single image entries, judged individually (not as a series).
    $10 for each additional photograph.
    Receive a written review of your work for an additional $25.
    Max 10 images, judged as a series. Your submission should work as a group, thematically or aesthetically.
    Receive a written review of your work for an additional $25.
    Deadline: Wednesday, August 24, 2022
    Are you currently an enrolled student?
    Get a 30% discount on your entry fee. Start your submission and select the option to register as a student. Your discount will then be automatically applied to your entry.
    © Kiiro
    Be Persistent
    Many successful photographers enter the same work in several competitions before they finally win. This is an effective strategy to have your work seen by many different jurors and build your career. Persistence is the key to getting your work seen by influential experts worldwide - it only takes one person to make a positive impact on your creative journey!
    We respect artists’ rights
    All photographers retain full copyrights for their own work. Period. Winners, Jurors' Picks and Finalists grant LensCulture limited, restricted use of winning photos only to promote the photographers themselves and in connection with marketing the Awards competition itself. Details can be found in the Competition Rules.