Copenhage Collective Sara, Peter and Tobias win BJP International Photography Award 2018

  • © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
    © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
  • © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
    © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
  • © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
    © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
  • © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
    © Sara, Peter & Tobias from the series, the merge
East Wing is proud to announce that Copenhagen-based Collective Sara Galbiati, Peter Eriksen and Tobias Markussen as the winners of the BJP International Photography Award 2018 for their series The Merge, a visual exploration of the possibility that we are living inside a simulation. East Wing has been representing the Copenhagen based trio since 2016, featuring their work at Unseen AmsterdamPhotofairs San Francisco and in Marfa Texas during the annual film festival there.

The Merge is an in-depth investigation into artificial intelligence and robotics, which aims to explore and visually interpret the possibility that we are living inside a simulation. Could our world be a constructed illusion?

For thousands of years, our perception of reality has been questioned, and the discussion has garnered new interest with the development of technology. In 2003, Oxford University philosopher Nick Bostrom published ‘The Simulation Argument’, asking whether life on earth could actually be taking place inside a computer simulation, and academics and tech experts came out in droves to support Bostrom’s theory. Tesla founder Elon Musk has reasoned that the exponential haste with which artificial intelligence is developing proves that we could actually be inside somebody else’s simulation, as AI is rapidly becoming indistinguishable from our own reality.

The Merge is a seminal work that visually entertains this theory, artistically investigating the consequences that supercomputers, artificial intelligence and robots may have on our society. By looking at interactions between man and machine, the project explores how the accelerated digitised paradigm will affect our emotional, social and moral norms, and could prove our place within someone else’s simulation.

The project balances realism and imagination, leaving space for the viewer to engage with its dialogue and reconsider their own perception of reality.

Peter, Sara and Tobias met while attending the Fatamorgana School of Photography in Denmark, where they now share a studio. They made a name for themselves with their first project and photobook, Phenomena, in 2015. This debut project, an anthropological study of UFOs and extraterrestrials, was exhibited in 2016 at Rencontres d’Arles and nominated for Prix de la Photo Figaro. Since their initial collaboration, the collective has developed a conceptual and subjective approach akin to documentary, which considers issues founded on theories and first-person accounts, rather than fact.

Now in its 14th year, British Journal of Photography’s International Photography Award recognises the best of contemporary photographic talent. The award has been instrumental in launching the careers of some of the most influential and respected photographers today, giving them the opportunity to be recognised and celebrated by the international photographic community.  Sara, Peter and Tobias have been awarded A trip to London, a professional portfolio review with Metro Imaging, a solo exhibition in July 2018 at TJ Boulting Gallery in London and a £5000 production grant from Metro imaging in London among other exclusive rewards.

The Judges for this years International Photography Award Included:

Farina Farshad, Founding Director at Photo London
Simon Bainbridge Editorial Director of BJP
Mark Sealy MBE, Director of Autograph ABP, London
Alona Pardo, Curator at the Barbican
Fional Rogers, Business Development Manager at Magnum Photos
Hannah Watson, Director at TJ Boulting Gallery / London

The British Journal of Photography is a monthly publication that takes an international perspective on contemporary photography, focusing on fine art and documentary, and the cutting edge of editorial and commercial practices. We have been at the centre of photography since 1854, celebrating the artists, inventors and pioneers who have shaped it.

'the merge' is still in production, but already the project has been gaining a lot of accolades in Europe - recently winning the Forhanna Grant in the Netherlands. The artists are about to head to South Korea to continue making images for the project.  After the introductory exhibition at TJ Boulting in London thie July, a full presentation of 'the merge' will take place at the Breda Photo Festival in September.

For more information on the Merge please contact East Wing:

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