Deadline: 24 August 2021

Calling young photographers! Do you live along the Silk Roads? Have you travelled these ancient routes? Does their rich history fascinate you? Then join UNESCO in promoting dialogue, diversity and development!

The 2021 edition of the Youth Eyes on the Silk Roads international photo contest, open to everyone around the world aged 14 to 25, is an unmissable opportunity to share your creative talent and capture the vibrant shared heritage of the Silk Roads.

The contest is open from 24 May to 24 August 2021 for participants aged 14-25 living in, or travelling along, the Silk Roads. Young photographers are invited to express their unique creativity and individuality through the medium of photography, sharing images that highlight the significant cultural interactions taking place along the Silk Roads.

This year photographs must represent Silk Roads shared heritage through the two parallel themes of:

  • Textiles and Clothing
  • Intercultural Exchanges in the Time of Covid-19, including in the Field of Textiles and Clothing

This year in particular, at a time when many educational and cultural institutions have been temporarily closed, this contest provides an opportunity for young people to connect with one another in a digital space and share their creativity and vision for our post-pandemic world. Many hubs of social activity and human interaction, including schools, have been adversely affected by Covid-19. In light of these disruptions UNESCO is trying to support remote learning, educational access and youth engagement with culture, through its many initiatives.

The submitted photographs will be examined by an International Selection Committee composed of renowned experts.

There will be two competition categories: 14-17 years old, and 18-25 years old. Three winners, each receiving a prize, will be selected from each age category, with the winners being announced online on September 2021.

First-place winners will receive a professional camera. Second place winners will receive a semi-professional camera, and the prize for third place will be a standard-model digital camera. Subject to Covid-19 restrictions, winners will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to the award ceremony, with those under 17 years of age accompanied by one family member, courtesy of UNESCO.

A travelling exhibition of around 50 photos that best represent the spirit of the contest will be exhibited in various places around the world, again depending on restrictions. To further commemorate the occasion, these exceptional photographs will ultimately appear in a professional photo album.

UNESCO encourages all eligible young people to participate in our Youth Eyes on the Silk Roads photo contest | #UNESCOSilkRoads


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