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PhotoEspaña shows its playful side – a photo essay

Madrid’s annual photography festival is a riot of fun and fantasy, with vintage circus acts, people pretending to be potatoes and Samuel Fosso’s sardonic take on classic images

PhotoEspaña, the annual photography festival that takes over Madrid, is this year infused with the spirit of playfulness. Of the 90 exhibitions that fill the city’s museums and cultural spaces, five core shows have been selected and curated by the photographer Cristina de Middel, best known for her Afronaughts series, a playful reimagining of Zambia’s short-lived 1960s space mission. In Middel’s world, play isn’t a time-wasting, puerile distraction but an essential part of creativity. It is an invitation to stop and think differently.

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