The annual international photography competition is seen by more than 3.5 million people in 100 cities in 45 countries each year. A must for photography enthusiasts and the globally conscious, the World Press Photo contest and free exhibition celebrates and champions photojournalism on an international scale.
From rangers in Zakouma National Park, central Africa returning after weeks on elephant patrol to stop poaching and an International Animal Rescue keeper in Borneo moving juvenile orangutans to migrants seeking refuge and protestors taking to the streets of Paris, the prestigious World Press Photo annual competition brings compelling global issues home.
The selection process is not an easy task as this year 5,775 international photographers from 128 different countries submitted 82,951 photos for consideration. Lars Boering, Managing Director of the World Press Photo Foundation, said: “This year we had more photographers and more entries than ever in our contest. We see that the photographers are as committed as we are to providing accurate and fair images on the world’s most important events and issues.”
As well as seeing the winners of the 15 categories that includes General News, Sports, Contemporary Issues and People Stories, you’ll also be able to experience first-hand the winning image that received the World Press Photo Of The Year.
The overall accolade is awarded to a photographer in honor of their creativity and skill for capturing an image of great journalistic import. Considering this, you can understand why Warren Richardson’s arresting image of a migrant passing a child under barbed wire as they cross the border from Serbia into Hungary caught the eye of the jurors.
Richardson said: “I camped with the refugees for five days on the border. A group of about 200 people arrived, and they moved under the trees along the fence line. They sent women and children, then fathers and elderly men first. I must have been with this crew for about five hours and we played cat and mouse with the police the whole night. I was exhausted by the time I took the picture. It was around three o’clock in the morning and you can’t use a flash while the police are trying to find these people because I would just give them away. So I had to use the moonlight alone.”
Here, we’ve selected just a few of the gripping images, some accompanied with their fascinating stories, you can see at the exhibition.
1st place General News category. Shot for The New York Times
“Migrants and refugees arrived by boat in November near the village of Skala on the Greek island of Lesbos. Under Europe’s system of open internal borders, the island’s thinly patrolled, easily accessible coastline, within sight of the Turkish coast, might as well be the frontier of France or Germany or Sweden.”
1st place Contemporary Issues category
“Runaway talibes stand on the bank of Senegal river, in Saint Louis city, north of Senegal, May 20, 2015. Saint Louis is known as Talibe city. A city with small proportions compared to Dakar but with a large number of Talibes. Due to that many of them choose the streets instead of Daaras.”
1st place Nature category
“The sunbather is oblivious to the ominous shelf cloud approaching – on Bondi beach. A massive “cloud tsunami” looms over Sydney in a spectacular weather event seen only a few times a year. The enormous shelf cloud rolled in from the sea, turning the sky almost black and bringing violent thunderstorms in its wake.”
1st place Contemporary Issues category
1st place Spot News Stories category
2nd prize General Stories category. Shot for Dagens Nyheter, Sweden
“In November, the European Union granted Turkey three billion euros for border control, and to keep refugees within the country. Police and coastguard patrols stepped up significantly and to avoid detection many refugees attempted the crossing at night, often in a flimsy or unseaworthy craft. Many people drowned after boats capsized or sank, and those who survived the crossing often arrived in a state of hypothermia.“
2nd place People Stories category
“The feast of Las Mayas, in Colmenar Viejo, on the outskirts of Madrid, has its origins in pagan ritual. It is held annually at the beginning of May, to celebrate spring. Five or six groups create altars adorned with plants and flowers on the main town square and adjacent streets, and each selects a young girl between the ages of six and 15 to be a ‘Maya’. She must then sit on the altar—very still, silent and serious—wearing a white blouse and skirt, and a Manila shawl.”
2nd place Long-Term Projects category
“Howie calls these “his and hers” chairs. He sits beside Laurel, his wife of thirty-four years, as they get their weekly chemotherapy treatments, side by side at Oncologist Dr. Barry Boyd’s office. Greenwich, Connecticut. January, 2013.”
3rd place Nature category
“Colima Volcano erupts with rock showers, lightning, and lava flows. The volcano, which is one of the most active in Mexico, showed an increase in activity from July onwards. Lightning in volcano eruptions is generated when rock fragments, ash and ice particles in the volcanic plume collide, producing static charges—just as ice particles do in clouds.”
3rd place People category
3rd place General News category
3rd place Long-Term Projects category
Where to see the World Press Photo 16 exhibition around the world:
Until 29 January 2017 at Caixa Cultural, Salvador, Brazil;
Until 28 January 2017 at Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv, Israel;
Until 25 January 2017 at Museo Mar, Buenos Aires, Argentina;
Until 29 January 2017 at Museum Hilversum, Hilversum, the Netherlands;
Until 25 January 2017 at City Carré Magdeburg, Magdeburg, Germany;
12 February 2017 at Centre of Contemporary Art, Torun, Poland;
11 February 2017 to 12 March 2017 at La Fundación Chirivella Soriano, Valencia, Spain;
18 February 2017 to 12 March 2017 at Schloss Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany;
3 March 2017 to 26 March 2017 at National Museum of Singapore, Singapore
Find more details here.