PHOTOSTORY PROJECT Awards - Migrants: An Invisible Force in Central Asia 2017

Publish Date: Apr 13, 2017

Deadline: May 10, 2017



Migrants: An Invisible Force in Central Asia

The project gives voice to the people of Central Asia to tell us what migration means through their photos and their stories. In a region where human mobility was always part of the nomadic life, modern citizens of Central Asia are becoming citizens of the world through migration within the region and beyond. Their migration stories depend on the choices they make and the challenges they encounter, on how they engage in the societies they join, and how societies receives them, on their search for a better life with dignity and respect of their rights.

IOM CA launches a photography award and invites University Students and Artists/Photographers (citizens of Central Asia) to submit photographs related to the theme Migrants: An Invisible Force in Central Asia aiming to draw attention and stimulate dialogue around the theme of migration through powerful photography, story writing and open discussions with government and non government stakeholders, societies and communities; its key goals are raising awareness on migrants’ rights, enhancing tolerance, eliminating xenophobia and racism towards migrants’ and migrant communities.


Central Asia has been a crossroads of goods and people from the days of the Silk Road. Today hundreds of thousands of people move daily across the international borders in search of employment and opportunity, while millions of Central Asians work abroad and remit funds to their families. Migrants are an invisible force which is not always acknowledged. Their presence enriches the countries they reside by their contribution in cultural, social and economic activities. All photographs revealing this underlying power in a realistic or symbolic form are welcome. 


Photographs from both categories should bear a relationship to the subject/theme and can be of any photographic genre: i/documentary ii/ street photography iii/ staged iv/ conceptual, other.
A short text should also accompany the series of the photographs,
either describing the images and telling their story or providing a short abstract which presents the concept of the artist.


University Students
There will be two winners in this category. The award for the first winner and second winner will be a 4-6 months paid internship at IOM in Central Asia. During their internships the aim will be for both students to work together to create an online photo-book on migration themes based on IOM’s activities in Central Asia.

There will be three winners in this category. The first winner will have the opportunity to present his work at Central Asia cities (Almaty, Astana, Bishkek, Dushanbe and others), travel to the openings of the exhibitions and also be one of the key speakers at IOM’s open discussions. IOM will work with the photographer/artist for the creation of an IOM CA photo-book. IOM will work closely with its partners to identify residency and other possible opportunities for the professional development of the winning photographer/artist. The second and the third winners will have their works produced by IOM CA and presented in the traveling exhibitions.

Only Central Asian citizens residing in Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) are eligible to submit original photography to one of two categories:


Any Central Asian University/College student (ages 18-26)

  • The number of photos: 5
  • Photos should be shot on mobile phone cameras
  • Photos must be related to theme of the project
  • Accepted color or black and white photos
  • The size of each file: max 5 MB
  • File Format: .JPG, .JPEG

A short text accompanying the photographs (max.150 words) in English or in Russian. The text may be a description related to the photos or the concept that lies behind them.



Any Central Asian artist or photographer (no age limit)

  • Number of photos: 10 to 15
  • Accepted series of images (the total number of photos that are included in the photo series shouldn’t be more than 15)
  • Accepted color or black and white photos
  • The size of each file: max 5 MB
  • File Format: .JPG, .JPEG
  • Image Resolution: 300 dpi
  • Consider photos only without additional inscriptions (no application to the logos photos, copyrights and signatures), frames, and other elements that have been added over the photos taken with the camera or after the post-processing base.
  • Don’t permit use photos made by other photographer, picture montage, add any addition elements that are absent in the photo.
  • Only moderate processing photos with the aim of improving the quality of the picture: reducing "red-eye", improving color, sharpness adjustment level, etc.

A short text accompanying the photographs (max.250 words) in English or in Russian. The text may be a story related to the series or the concept that lies behind them.

For more information please click "Further Official Information" below.

This opportunity has expired. It was originally published here:

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