The National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea (MMCA, Director Youn Bummo) launches PROJECT HASHTAG 2021, a public contest aimed at discovering next-generation creators and leaders in the art scene and promoting interdisciplinary collaboration, on Thursday, 1 April 2021.
In partnership with Hyundai Motor and held for the second time after its inaugural contest in 2019, PROJECT HASHTAG extends beyond the limits of the domain of art to discover, support, and engage in interdisciplinary collaboration with artists, writers, producers, and researchers from different fields. Beginning with its initial launch in 2019, this five-year project will select two teams annually (10 teams in total) to receive support.
The hashtag symbol (#) in the project name is widely used across social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to facilitate the search and organization of user-generated content. When a social media user hashtags a keyword along with a posted photo or comment, the post, along with other like-tagged posts, is exposed to users who search for that keyword. In this sense, the hashtag serves to make specific keywords links that enable communication among user-generated content in an infinite number of ways. Quickly evolving into a new mode of online expression, the hashtag and its limitless potential for communication clearly represent the objective of the contest.
PROJECT HASHTAG encourages experimentation with exhibition forms beyond the existing museum format of presenting visually focused artworks in a linear layout. It welcomes liberal encounters between various fields, including traditional visual arts fields such as painting, sculpture, new media, film, design, and architecture, as well as music, culinary arts, modern dance, linguistics, biology, physics, poetry, fiction, and hypertext. Moreover, the project actively supports the exploration of the tense borders that are formed when different spheres conjoin and collide.
PROJECT HASHTAG is open to any group of more than two people—including creators, producers, and researchers—regardless of its makeup. Evaluation of applicants will proceed in two parts: first, a review of the application and second, an in-person presentation and interview. In 2021, internationally renowned writer and prominent contributor to post-Internet discourse Hito Steyerl will join the evaluation committee to review the submitted works by Korea’s next-generation creators. The two teams of creators selected as finalists will each be provided with a grant of KRW 30 million to direct toward their creative work, a six-month studio residency (MMCA Residency Changdong), and an opportunity to showcase their finished work at MMCA Seoul. In addition, the finalists will be invited to an event attended by major overseas institutions and experts for a chance to discuss overseas opportunities for their works.
The evaluation committee, composed of MMCA curators and innovators in diverse fields in both Korea and abroad, will select the two teams of next-generation creators after carefully considering all submitted projects’ originality, expandability, feasibility, potential impact, and development.
The application period is from Thursday, 1 April 2021 to Friday, 30 April 2021, and applications, which must include an introduction of the group and overall work plan, may be submitted via email only. Detailed information about the application guidelines and contest schedule is available online at the MMCA website (mmca.go.kr) as well as the PROJECT HASHTAG website (projecthashtag.net). Finalists will be announced on the PROJECT HASHTAG website in May.
Youn Bummo, director of the MMCA, notes, “As an innovative contest reflective of our present times’ spirit of integration and collaboration, PROJECT HASHTAG looks forward to the participation of many young creators. The MMCA will continue to carry out its purpose by seeking to expand and investigate new possibilities for the field of visual arts, encouraging diverse forms of collaboration, and actively supporting next-generation art.”
For inquiries about the contest, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org