– Theme: Visual Storytelling / Competition Judge: Nichole Sobecki
From classic social documentary to imaginative storytelling: The art of visual storytelling encompasses a wide range of possibilities with at its heart, the will to tell a story and we were seeking visual artists aiming to captivate and share their stories with awareness and conviction.
1ST PRIZE: Berber Theunissen
“The shrouded body reminds us of the profound transition into motherhood, but also of that thin veil between life and death, the woman you are before and the woman you become. As an emotional landscape, it reveals the complexity of an often caricatured experience: the anticipation, the hope, and the terror. The pregnant female form has been depicted countless times, yet this reimagining feels personal, honest, and brave.” — Nichole Sobecki
2ND PRIZE: Lorraine Turci
“The lone shed sits, vibrant against the subdued tonality of this land and its waddle of penguins. Too often the Artics are portrayed as desolate, untouched places, far removed from the concerns of mankind (or any meaningful sense of responsibility). Here, the photographer has elegantly challenged that view. To truly bring ourselves into harmony with the natural world, we must return to seeing humanity as a part of it.” — Nichole Sobecki
3RD PRIZE: Simon Móricz-Sabján
“Simon Móricz-Sabján’s thoroughly arresting and impeccably-framed image brilliantly demonstrates the medium’s communicative capabilities. Strikingly forthright, yet imbued with a surreal quality, it imparts the essence of the scene perfectly, yet simultaneously resonates far beyond the sum of its parts, serving as a profoundly somber and familiar symbol of the ongoing global health crisis.” – The Independent Photographer Editors
Judge: Nichole Sobecki
Represented by renowned photo agency VII, Nichole Sobecki is an American photographer and filmmaker based in Nairobi, Kenya. She began her career in Turkey, Lebanon, and Syria, focusing on regional issues related to identity, conflict, and human rights. Nichole aims to create photographs that demand consideration for the lives of those represented – their joys, challenges, and ultimately their humanity. Amidst our fractured present existence, she believes that a well-told story can cut through the noise, deepen empathy, and inspire a more conscious world.
Nichole’s photography has received countless awards and has been exhibited worldwide including The United Nations Headquarters in New York City and the Musée des Arts et Métiers in Paris. A passionate teacher, workshop leader, and speaker, she is also a contributor to Everyday Africa, and her work is regularly published in National Geographic.