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In total, 391 photobooks from 46 countries from all over the world, from Bangla Desh to Norway, from Russia to Australia, from Japan to America, from China to Brazil were sent in to the 2018 KASSEL DUMMY AWARD. The shortlist selection resulted in 53 photobooks as chosen by Valentina Abenavoli (Akina Books, Istanbul), Anne-Katrin Bicher (Montag Stiftung, Bonn), Sonia Berger (Dalpine Publishers, Madrid), Frederic Lezmi (Photographer, The PhotoBookMuseum, Cologne), Dieter Neubert (Fotobookfestival Kassel), Markus Schaden (The PhotoBookMuseum, Cologne), Andrea Schmidt (Verlag Kettler, Dortmund), Salvatore Vitale (Editor in Chief of YET Magazine, Lausanne).



Bahadir Aksan (TR) »Daffodil«

Taufiqur Rahman Anik (BD) »Modern Photography«

Julia Borissova (RU) »DOM (Document Object Model)«

Alessandra Carosi (IT) »Ruota«

Piergiorgio Casotti, Emanuele Brutti (IT) »INDEX G«

Federico Clavarino (IT) »Hereafter«

Celine Croze (FR) »Nothing Happened«


Paula de Abrantes (ARG) »MIS 15«

Nicolas Delaroche (FR/CH) »First Seen«

Karim El Maktafi (IT/MA) »Hayati«

Theo Elias (SE) »Smoke«

Florian Genz (DE) »WARAGI«

Yoshikatsu Fujii (JP) »Hiroshima Graph – Rabbits abandon their children«

Tamsin Green (UK) »Born of the Purest Parents«

Monika Hanfland (DE) »Püppi arrived«

Youval Hai (ISR) »Dust & Scratches«

Jan Richard Heinicke (DE) »Cornutopia«

Agata Kalinowska (PL) »SCUM«

Oguz Karakütük (TR) »Delta«

Özgür Atlagan & Zeynep Kayan (TR) »Kumkuat«

Jiye Kim (KR) »Elephant and Castle«

Koji Kitagawa (JP) »Hello«

Vladimíra Kotra (CZ) »Chiméra«

Holger Krischke, Thomas Haubner and students of University of Fine Arts Münster (DE) »sensor«

Ksenia Sidorova (RUS) »Simplex«

Kevin Kunstadt (USA) »LETTER BOX«

Tomasz Laczny (PL) »DISAPPEARANCE«

Martin Lamberty (D) »My Friends Got Famous«

Verónica Losantos (SP) »Mansilla«

Lucie Marsmann (DE) »Archiv Alto Adige«

Ann Massal (FR) »The Eye of the Cyclops«

Julia Mejnertsen »M.M.«

Mike Osborne (US) »Federal Triangle«

Nicolas Polli (CH) »Ferox the Forgotten Archives 1976 -2010«

TJ Proechel (US) »26 ft 8 inches«


Rocco Rorandelli (IT) »Tobacco«

Bianca Salvo (IT) »Time and Again«

Rebecca Sampson (DE) »Apples for Sale«

Muriel Schouten (NL) »Ways of Understanding, Vood«

Johann Süßebecker & Fabian Melchers (DE) »Night People«

Nikita Teryoshin (RU) »Hornless Heritage«

Yulia Tikhomirova (RU-IT) »A Landslide«

Martin Toft (DK) »Te Ahi Kā – The Fires of Occupation«

Terttu Uibopuu »(EST/USA) E.S.E.«

Siska Vandecasteele (BE) »Forain, Kaffers en Boerin«

Daniel Vogl (D) »Walter«

Andrew Waits (USA) »Aporia«

Jagoda Wisniewska (PL) »Czarna Madonna«

Ole Witt (DE) »Help Desk – Random Acts of Administration«

Marta Wódz (PL) »High Culture«

Rie Yamada (JP) »Familie werden«


Being part of the jury of the Kassel Dummy Award

Being one of those who judges the best dummy out there puts you in a privileged position. You will be among a group of people who will have insight into some of the most compelling issues that artists are working on, as well as an interesting look into what could possibly become a masterpiece or define a trend. Being part of the jury of the Kassel Dummy Award involves all of this and brings a considerable amount of responsibility with it as well. The process is long, the applications are numerous and the level is high. This means trying to find a good strategy in order to be able to set the best work in the right time, leaving some scope for discussion and feedback. Since the very beginning — or better, first box — me and the other members of the jury noticed that our mission was far from being easy: many interesting projects, many diversified books and approaches to the book. It was exciting to encounter the creativity of many artists who conceive the book as a proper work of art rather than as a container or simply a beautiful object. In this sense, we had a great discussion on the concept of the dummy and how a good layout influences the opinion one has on it. I must say that among all the entries there were only few examples of objects that felt like a “draft”; on the contrary, many of the books were presented with an elaborate design and good printing quality and paper. I, sometimes, found it very hard to judge them without being influenced. According to my concept of a dummy, I want to see a “work in progress”, an object that leaves room for a certain degree of speculation. This said, I must admit that the overall quality of the entries was a perfect mirror of how access to technical supplies and knowledge is becoming easier and easier. But this is not always good. On many occasions I had the feeling that a stronger edit or a different sequence, as well as a different format, would have enhanced a book. Self-publishing is great as soon as skills are shared among professionals. What strategy did I adopt so as to understand what to pick and what not? “Only killers, no fillers”, to quote Frederic Lezmi with which we started the jury session. What do I think makes a book a “killer”? I’ve been trying to focus less on the form and more on the work. A strong conceptual approach to the subject and a functional way to spread it across the pages of the book are a conditio sine qua non for attracting my interest. Then a dash of creativity and a total awareness of the choices do the rest. I’ve been trying to look at books that I felt were complete at the level of the story. Books with a specific and coherent structure. I’ve been trying to read the texts and discuss with the other members of the jury, sometimes I then even changed my mind. The first round was hard, but we made it to a first long shortlist! The second round was harder, in fact. At that stage, all the remaining books were eligible to enter the final shortlist. We went accurately back to all of them, we discussed and shared our thoughts until we selected the last 50. In the end, we all agreed and managed to make a strong shortlist that touches on important topics and different approaches to the photo book. The resulting travelling exhibition will be a valuable place to see some amazing works.

Congratulations to all the artists who made it and
thanks to all the participants.
Salvatore Vitale (Editor in Chief of YET Magazine, Lausanne).


Valentina Abenavoli (Akina Books, Istanbul)

Anne-Katrin Bicher (Montag Stiftung, Bonn)

Sonia Berger (Dalpine Publishers, Madrid)

Andrea Schmidt (Verlag Kettler, Dortmund)

Frederic Lezmi (Photographer, The PhotoBookMuseum, Cologne)

Markus Schaden (The PhotoBookMuseum, Cologne)

Salvatore Vitale (Photographer, Editor in Chief of YET Magazine, Lausanne)

Dieter Neubert (Fotobookfestival Kassel, Director, Kassel)



Valentina Abenavoli, Akina Books, Istanbul

Morten Andersen, photographer and bookmaker, Oslo

Andrea Schmidt, Verlag Kettler, Dortmund

JH Engström, artist, Värmland/ Paris

Pierre Bessard, publisher, Editions Bessard, Paris

Corinne Noordenbos, photographer and educator, Amsterdam

Dana Lixenberg, artist, Amsterdam/ New York

Susan Meiselas, artist, Magnum Foundation, New York

Salvatore Vitale, YET magazine, Lausanne



For the first time, the FOTOBOOKFESTIVAL KASSEL will offer dummy book REVIEWS where DUMMY AWARD participants will have the opportunity to discuss the pros and cons and the feasibility of their future photobook with jury members. They can apply for the REVIEWS by mentioning this on the DUMMY AWARD registration form or by applying on our website (at a later stage). To take part in the REVIEWS, they have to be in Kassel on 31 May 2018 (Festival opening day) and pay a (reduced) € 60.00 fee for two 30 minutes sessions or a € 120.00 fee for four 30 minutes sessions.



Valentina Abenavoli
Photographer, Akina Books, Istanbul

Morten Andersen
Photographer, Oslo

Pierre Bessard
Founder of the publishing house Editions Bessard, Paris

Rémi Coignet
Writer and Editor-in-chief of The Eyes, Paris

Gösta Flemming
Founder of the publishing house Journal, Stockholm

Calin Kruse
Photographer and Founder of dienacht Magazine, Leipzig

Russett Ledermann
Writer, Media Artist, Educator and Co-Founder of 10×10 Photobooks, New York

Frederic Lezmi
Photographer and book designer, initiator of the Book Lab in Istanbul and co-founder of The PhotoBookMuseum in Cologne

Vincent Marcilhacy
Founder and Publisher of The Eyes, Paris

Corinne Noordenbos
Photographer and Educator, Amsterdam

Monte Packham
Writer and Publisher at Steidl, Göttingen

Markus Schaden
Co-founder of The PhotoBookMuseum in Cologne, bookmaker and lecturer, Cologne

Salvatore Vitale
Photographer and Editor in Chief of YET Magazine, Lausanne

Hannes Wanderer
Founder of the publishing house Peperoni Books and 25books, Berlin



The 53 shortlisted photobook dummies will be on display at:

Dublin, PhotoIreland Festival, 01 – 31 May, The Library Project

Kassel, Fotobookfestival, 31 May – 03 June, documenta-Halle

Hamburg, Triennial of Photography Hamburg, 07 – 17 June, Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Madrid, IED – Istituto Europeo di Design, July

Rom, FotoLeggendo, 08 June – 15 July, Officine Fotografiche Roma

Zagreb, Organ Vida – International Photography Festival,10 – 16 September

Cologne, Internationale Photoszene Köln, 21 September – 14 October

Aarhus, Photobook Week Aarhus, 04 – 07 October

Nida, Photography Seminar Litauen, 02 – 09 September

Dresden, Zentralbibliothek im Kulturpalast Dresden, from 01 November

Tokyo (projected), The Tokyo Art Book Fair, Spring 2019


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