On Thursday 2 February, the World Photography Organisation announced the shortlist for the 2012 Sony World Photography Awards. Billed as the global photographic event of the year, the Sony World Photography Awards celebrate the very best in photography from around the world, from the next generation of emerging photographers through to the established masters of the art. The 2012 competition has garnered increased worldwide interest with over 112,000 entries from 171 countries, with the shortlisted images depicting the stories of extraordinary lives from around the world. The Professional competition reflects a turbulent year of global events with the war in Libya; the Greek and European economic crisis; the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan and the fall of Gaddafi, in the Photojournalism & Documentary categories. The shortlist for the Fine Art and Commercial categories gets to the very heart of daily life - a small sheep-farming community in Iceland; the rice harvest in South China; a religious pilgrimage in Poland and gold diggers in Chile. This year the honorary jury found the quality of work exceptionally strong across all categories, discovering many photographers new to the Sony World Photography Awards roster. Manuel Geerinck (Belgium); Lee Chee Wai (Malaysia); Alejandro Cartagena (Mexico), Irina Werning (Argentina); Gwenn Dubourthoumieu(Republic of the Congo) and Simon Norfolk (UK), are but a few of the new names to place as finalists and shortlisted photographers. Returning photographers from previous years, include 2010 Professional Landscape winner, Peter Franck(Germany); who this year is a finalist in three categories; 2011 Professional Contemporary Issues and Current Affairs winner, Javier Arcenillas (Spain); and Chan Kwok Hung (Hong Kong) whose stunningly dramatic image ‘Buffalo Race’ won the Overall Open Competition in 2011. In being shortlisted for the Sony World Photography Awards, photographers can now look forward to the invaluable support of the World Photography Organisation, which includes having their work exhibited at a major exhibition at London’s Somerset House (from 27 - 30 April), to coincide with the annual Sony World Photography Awards ceremony and gala dinner on 26 April at the Hilton Hotel in London’s Park Lane.
© Oren Shved, Israel, 2012
courtesy Sony World Photography Awards 2012
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