DOCUMENTARY Awards June 2018

  • Winning Photographer Alessandra Manzotti

    Winning Photographer Alessandra Manzotti

    Title: Extreme herding

    In Western Mongolia, in order to cover the daily 35 km journey in daylight, the herd needs to leave first thing in the morning. Although temperatures at this time can reach -35/40°C, the scenery is quite spectacular. © Alessandra Manzotti
  • Second Prize Alec Von Bargen

    Second Prize Alec Von Bargen

    Title: Under the blue skies of Agok #2

    The series 'Under the Blue Skies of Agok' was taken in South Sudan, the newest country on earth. Internally displaced people and nomads in Agok deal with health care exclusion, endemic/epidemic, famine and armed conflict.

    'Genocide' is a word being used more frequently to describe what is happening in the country. At nights, victims and patients sleeping in makeshift clinics dream under the synthetic blue skies of mosquito netting. The light creeps through, casting shadows and silhouettes which become hauntingly poetic. © Alec Von Bargen
  • Third Prize Anja Bruehling

    Third Prize Anja Bruehling

    Title: Brick Workers - Young Girls

    India is a fascinating place and a true microcosm of human life. Spanning the entire spectrum from joy to sorrow, from extreme wealth to extreme poverty, from top notch medical care to nonexistent, from hunger to extreme gorging, from healthy to the sick. India is a place where every single idea about human living, about life and its associated philosophies, about political systems, about law and order can be explored.

    You can come away extremely sad, depressed and rejecting of everything that is India. Alternatively, you come away with an exhilarating feeling to explore more, do more, try more, and live more in every facet of one’s life. My story examines ‘Brick Workers of India’.

    Brick building in India is a back breaking tough work compounded by issues such as bonded labor, exploitation of the poor, uneducated. Estimate show that there are over 100.000 kilometers all over India with and estimated 12,5 million to 25 million people working. India's brick industry contributes around £3bn to the country's economy every year. © Anja Bruehling
  • Finalist Vikas Datta

    Finalist Vikas Datta

    Title: Catch of the Day

    A traditional fishing boat returns to sell its catch near Goa, India. © Vikas Datta
  • Finalist Jefferson Lankford

    Finalist Jefferson Lankford

    Title: To Be, Rather Than to Seem

    The images in this ongoing series depict raw moments that encapsulate the essence of rural life in my home state. By focusing on humor, pain, sadness and the unusual in my pictures — the subjects of these images present the viewer with the multiple aspects of both life and death as witnessed in various locations across North Carolina. © Jefferson Lankford
  • Finalist Julia Gunther

    Finalist Julia Gunther

    Title: The first look

    12 days after her gender reassignment surgery, Chedino uses a mirror to take a first look at her new vagina, Hanover Park, Cape Town, South Africa, 2017.

    Chedino is a trans woman living in Heideveld, a poor suburb of Cape Town. She has spent 12 years on the waiting list at the Transgender Clinic at Groote Schuur Hospital, one of the few units in South Africa that is able to perform gender reassignment surgery. Chedino was selected as one of only 4 candidates who’s gender reassignment surgery was paid for by the government in 2017. © Julia Gunther
  • Finalist Boyuan Zhang

    Finalist Boyuan Zhang

    Title: The day before the Corban Festival

    The day before the Corban Festival, Uyghur people returned from the urban space even few thousand kilometers away, to the place they were born or their families inhabit, for the biggest festival of their year. © Boyuan Zhang
  • Finalist Adrian Morris

    Finalist Adrian Morris

    Title: Last light on the Volta River

    On the last boat ride of the day across the mouth of the Volta River, the son of a women carrying supplies back from the local market feels the water from the river through his fingers on the way back to their village.

    Ghana, formerly known as the Gold Coast until changing its name, was one of the first African countries to gain independence from colonial rule in 1957. It is a unique country on the west coast of Africa rich in resources such as gold and cacao and recently oil. It has a rich and vibrant culture and a dark history of being one of the main ports for the importing and exporting of slaves around the world by European countries that had built their forts along the coastline.

    Shot in between personal projects during a few weeks spent travelling from East to West along the coast of Ghana in early 2018, this series of photos is a portrayal through my eyes of the current day to day life and culture of the communities that live and work along the 537 km of coast line that belong to Ghana. © Adrian Morris
  • Finalist Kristian Leven

    Finalist Kristian Leven

    Title: Isla Grande, Colombia

    Members of the community island, Isla Grande, stand outside one of the shopfronts at sunset. The island has only 1000 inhabitants, and no roads, and was frequented by Pablo Escobar, whose secret party mansion still stands. © Kristian Leven
  • Finalist Conrad Golovac

    Finalist Conrad Golovac

    Title: "The Last Icebergs" - From series "Newfoundland"

    "The beauty is in the details sometimes. Despite their immense size and odd shapes, it’s the smallest parts of an iceberg that have the strangest beauty. Each piece that breaks off has a story that spans a millennia." © Conrad Golovac


“As a photographer who has entered my work into competitions in the past, I’ve oftentimes found myself at a loss afterwards when trying to understand the response to my work. So I’d like to include a few shorts words about the finalists and why I chose them. Photography is a deeply powerful medium, one in which profound observations can be easily overlooked if the creator is not careful. My taste is, at the end of the day, my own, shaped by my worldview and appreciation for some things rather than others. I chose these photographs as finalists because they retain in them some spark, some beginning, that tells me that the photographers are well on their way to finding a voice and way of sharing the world. This is, at its heart, what we all strive to do.”
– Mustafah Abdulaziz

First Prize: Alessandra Manzotti

“There are a few things that struck me when I saw this photograph. The sublime merger of the sky’s color into the horizon. The rocks and their etching presence against the thin, faint line of distant hills. And, at the core, the two-dimensionality of layers in the living presence of man and animal, halted in their progression towards the edge of the frame. The photographer has seen without pretence, and has given the viewer a perch from which to share their climb atop this ridge. By trading easy drama for resonate simplicity, this photograph achieves what I value most in the tradition of documentary photography: the willingness to go out into life and carry back some fraction of the heavy weight of human experience from the edge of the map.”
– Mustafah Abdulaziz

Second Prize: Alec Von Bargen

“The pain of others is a serious responsibility and oftentimes, difficult to navigate. What resonated most in this photograph, and its text, lay in the anonymity of the subjects, the intimate and simple moment this was taken amongst many, many others. At the center of documentary photography is the importance of choice. How do you depict the lives of others? This photograph evokes aesthetics already present in our mind yet takes that familiar and adds details that elevate it into notable distinction: the hint of an eye without the visibility of the entire face and how all the three figures face in opposite directions, as though both close and far, alone and together.”
– Mustafah Abdulaziz

Honorary Mention: Anja Bruehling

“A perfectly seized portrait capturing all the hardness and dignity of manual workers. The use of black and white here emphasises the heavy sun that weights on these women as they carry impressive stacks of bricks. Well timed and framed, the image provides all visual elements to understand the harshness of the job. Barefoot in an environment filled with dust and particles under a scorching sun: A powerful image of the world’s poverty-stricken that immediately brings to mind “Workers”, Sebastião Salgado’s tribute to the human condition; and a spectacular affirmation of the enduring spirit of working women and men”
– The Independent Photographer Editors

Travel Photography Winner Sandra Morante
© Sandra Morante

Current Theme:
TRAVEL Deadline: 31 August 2020

When traveling, the only way to discover the rhythm of life of a place is to experience it.

Each place we visit has its own particular look, ambiance, and atmosphere. Understanding its people, customs and traditions is vital and there’s always something unique to capture.

This summer we want to see images that communicate the life of a place in all its splendor and trigger our memories. Whatever the subject may be: street, portrait, landscape, documentary... We want to share your journey, visually and intellectually - Let’s travel together!

1st Prize: $1000 · 2nd Prize: $600 · 3rd Prize: $400

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