CATALYST: Mentoring Program
CATALYST is an intensive 7 month mentorship program produced by IC Visual Lab in collaboration with Bristol Photo Festival for those who wish to further their personal photographic vision and importantly, to expand their approach and ways of photographing and exhibiting. The program is open to local based and international practitioners who are at the beginning of their creative career, we are aiming to create an intersectional variety of participants that bring a plurality of visions. Through this programme we are hoping to offer a long term opportunity to 5 photographers/lens based artists who will receive the support of a mentor team with experience in various professional fields (artists, curators, designers, editors, arts management…). The aim is for mentees to continue and finish a body of work, to strengthen their creative processes and develop a conceptual framework around their individual practice. The programme will result in an exhibition as part of the Bristol Photo Festival programme in Spring 2021.

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- No Entry Fee


- There are no age or geographical restrictions for applicants.
- Applicants shouldn’t have had a solo show previous to the application deadline of this programme.
- Any creative practitioner who uses lens based media as part of this practice. We are also interested in those who combine their practice with other mediums (video, sound, technology, sculpture, artist books…)
- Basic English Language Skills


This program is delivered in collaboration with Bristol Photo Festival where the resulting work developed by - CATALYST participants will be presented. The theme of the first edition of Bristol Photo Festival is “A Sense of Place”.

To photograph a place is to describe a location that has been shaped, nurtured and even contested. It can define the frontier between nature and culture and hint at the complexities of ownership and access. It can be attended by competing narratives and polarised histories, whether they lean left or right. It can shape our understanding of the world and the qualities that come to define us and it can be about belonging, about appreciation and knowing a place so well that it is like no other. The components of cultural landscape elements play a significant role in defining the sense of place. These components are people, landform, water bodies, climate, economy, social, political which influence on the identity of place.


- 5 sessions of 1h with a personal mentor
- 3 additional sessions of 1h with other mentors from the team and program coordinators.
- £350 artist fee
- A featured interview + portfolio in Bristol Photo Festival website.
- Production costs of an exhibition as part of Bristol Photo Festival Programme in Spring 2021. Also the opportunity to present this work publicly with a talk, performance or action.

Francesca Seravalle (Curator/Educator), Julián Barón (Artist/Educator), Lebohang Kgagnye (Artist), Sarker Protik (Artist/Educator/Curator), Colin Pantall (Photographer/Writer/Educator), Dragana Jurisic (Artist/Writer)

Alejandro Acín (CATALYST Creative Director) & Safia Belhaj (Project Assistant)

CATALYST Mentoring Program produced by IC Visual Lab in collaboration with Bristol Photo Festival and the support of the Arts Council of England.
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