Cortona On The Move is a dynamic platform for contemporary photography, visual narratives, enquiring minds and adventure lovers. Each year, we give space and voice to those visions that can broaden our minds and open our hearts. The time has come to tell you more about the 2018 edition.


Yesterday 3 May 2018 at Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli we launched Cortona On The Move 2018, the 8th edition of the festival taking place in Cortona from 12 July to 30 September. During the inaugural days of the festival (12-15 July) and throughout the summer there will be exhibitions, events and discussions with leading figures in the field of photography.

Festival director Antonio Carloni hosted the press conference proudly presenting new sections, a whole new exhibition building and plenty of collaborations. “We are on the road to growth”, Carloni said. After that, he invited the major of Cortona Francesca Basanieri to join him. Basanieri said: “COTM works well in Cortona because it has an international appeal without foregoing its local roots” and she confirmed the council’s praise and support to the festival.

Then it was time for artistic director Arianna Rinaldo to take the floor, to explore COTM’s programme for 2018.
Rinaldo said: “When I set out selecting the exhibitions, I take into account the festival’s mission: the focus on contemporaneity and innovation”. These past months have been very intense and historically important across the world for a number of reasons, we are hearing more and more stories in which women are protagonists. So she decided to focus on women photographers. “We don’t simply want to fill a festival with women photographers: we want to create an experience that provides us with material for reflection and debate about global narratives and photography.” The selection includes women photographers, artists and producers of documentaries who investigate our world to bring us intimate stories and narratives that need to be told. The hands, the eyes and the minds of women working in contemporary photography who want their voices to be heard at all costs.

Women photographers are the subject of this year’s festival. Getting Closer, Becoming Mother: About Intimacy and Family. 1993-2012 by Israeli photographer Elinor Carucci examines her experience as a woman and a mother through a long-term photographic project. Jordanian photographer Tanya Habjouqa proposes a different narrative with her Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots, which explores the personal and family experiences of Syrian women who took refuge in nearby Jordan.
Poulomi BasusBlood Speaks: A Ritual of Exile is a multiplatform journey which centers on Nepalese women forced into exile during menstruation and subjected to many forms of abuse. In The Island of the Colorblind Sanne De Wilde takes us to Pingelap, a small atoll in the Pacific Ocean where most of the population suffers from achromatopsia, a genetic disease causing color blindness.
The dark chapter of Guantanamo is the subject of US photographer Debi Cornwall‘s work, Welcome to Camp America: Inside Guantánamo Bay, in which she documents the lives of prisoners in Guantánamo camp itself, and after they were pardoned and released. In Under Pressure, Guia Besana investigates female liberation and its evolution through the 20th and 21st centuries.
Fallout is Sim Chi Yin’s project, it was commissioned by the Nobel Peace Prize Center. She produced a series of images about the experiences, past and present, of men who work with nuclear weapons; then we’ve got Carlotta Cardana’s The Red Road Project, which concentrates on native Americans, their identity, and the attempt since the turn of the 19th century to erase their culture.
The subject chosen by Alena Zhandarova concerns the exploration of the uniqueness and diversity of each individual with her Puree with a Taste of Triangles. Then we have Revising History by Jennifer Greenburg, which is a study of photography, the nature of popular images and their role in the creation of symbols and cultural stereotypes.
In Bug Out Bag: The Commodification of American Fear, Allison Stewart explores the American obsession for the bug out bags, kits for survival during the critical first 72 hours following a catastrophe. Loulou d’Aki‘s Make a Wish is a photographic project about the hopes and dreams of the younger generation which aims to be a testimony of our times. After winning the COTM2017 Photobook prize, it was duly printed and published by the Festival.

For the first time COTM exhibits the book finalists of the Paris Photo-Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Awards, which celebrates the contribution of photo books to the evolution of photographic storytelling.

After that, Arianna Rinaldo introduced #instagrampier, Pierfrancesco Celada’s winning entry for the Happiness On The Move 2017 prize which will be exhibited at this year’s edition of the festival. Instagram Pier is the industrial wharf located on the west side of Hong Kong island where dozens of instagrammers, photographers and ordinary citizens flock to snap selfies and panoramic views.

The three finalists of the New Visions open call will be on show; lastly, Arianna Rinaldo will select a project among the finalists of the PhMuseum Grant and it will be exhibited at COTM 2018.

The expert who will be selecting the best dummy for this 3rd edition of the Photobook Prize is Lesley Martin, Aperture’s creative director. On July 14th at Cortona On The Move 2018, Lesley Martin will publicly discuss the finalists’ projects and announce the winner.

Arianna Rinaldo then presented us with a last-minute news: documentary project “They defend our freedoms” will be on show at MAEC. The project was commissioned by the European Parliament in collaboration with Magnum Photos on the 30th anniversary of the Sakharov Prize . Four Magnum photographers (Newsha Tavakolian, Enri Canaj, Bieke Depoorter e Jérôme Sessini) followed and documented the lives of four freedom activists in Cambogia, Tunisia, Etiopia and Bosnia-Erzegovina.

Antonio Carloni took the floor again to delve deeper into the many collaborations which animate the festival. First of all, he unveiled the great new feature of this edition, sponsored by Canon Cinema Eos: ARENA – Video and Beyond, a new unique category directed and curated by Liza Faktor and Amber Terranova’s Screen that presents experimental video, installations and multiplatform work created by photographers that employ digital stills, film and all related technology. Carloni said “This is our way to stay at the edge of the contemporary, to explore new languages where photography is just an alphabet.”
Carloni described the other projects in collaboration with Canon, who will be the festival’s official Digital Imaging Partner for the second year running. Raccontaci una storia is the theme of the 13th edition of Premio Canon Giovani Fotografi 2018 which, 20 years after its introduction, comes back in a revised version with an important new feature: the inclusion of a multimedia category alongside that of photography.
Moreover, starting from this edition, the Print Lab will be set up in Cortona and it will be operative in June and July, using Canon printing paper and technology and the knowhow of Center Chrome. As usual, the frames will be made by Rufus Photo Hub.
The Summer School is another joint initiative with Canon, during which workshops for the 2018 edition will be run in partnership with Canon Academy. Between July 14 and September 30, five workshops will be conducted with leading figures of contemporary photography. The tutors Canon Ambassadors Jérôme Sessini, Magnus Wennman, Simona Ghizzoni, Guia Besana and Paolo Verzone.
Tommaso Gabba, Consumer Imaging group Canon expressed his satisfaction for this “recent and productive” collaboration, coming to its second year. He explained Canon’s activities in collaboration with COTM. He also pointed out Canon’s engagement in being in the forefront of photography and in promoting culture.

Our partnership with Consorzio Vino Chianti continues. Lorenzo Tersi, Marketing manager, spoke about what lies behind a partnership lasting for 7 editions: “Chianti is an emotion, photography is an emotion, it’s narration. To us, this is an opportunity to create value for the Consorzio.”

Now into its second year, our partnership with Aboca continues with the production of an exhibition and a book about the Granducale di Montecchio estate. This year the artist chosen to develop the project is Simon Roberts, an English photographer well-known for his humanistic landscapes. Carlo Morello, Aboca’s PR explained how Roberts’ work efficiently sheds light on Aboca’s strategy to invest into natural techniques and biodiversity to promote growth.

For the first time, one of the festival exhibitions will be installed in the Valdichiana Outlet Village. Photographer Massimo Vitali will shoot a project at the Outlet in which he examines the environment and public interaction around this popular shopping center. Riccardo Lucchetti, center manager, spoke about the project: “It allows us to create a dialogue with the territory and it shows the potential of the Outlet as a cultural hub.”

Antonio Carloni then concluded the presentation by reminding the audience of another interesting venture: Sistema Festival Fotografia, the partnership of 5 Italian photography festivals, “a network where we can share experience, needs, audiences, partners and projects.” The project involves Cortona On The Move, Fotografia Europea, Festival della Fotografia Etica, Photolux and SIFEST.

This year at Cortona we strive to broaden your minds, open your hearts and stimulate your senses.



Watch the video of the press conference:



kublaiklan è un collettivo che realizza progetti curatoriali, educativi e di comunicazione in ambito fotografico. I membri (Rica Cerbarano, Francesco Colombelli, Laura Girasole, Aleksander Masseroli Mazurkiewicz e Marco Spinoni) si sono conosciuti nell'ambito del Festival internazionale di fotografia Cortona On The Move.