16-year-old Jasper Cox from Milton Keynes, UK has won the first Youth Photography Award sponsored by The World Photography Organisation. The award is organised by photomonth east London’s annual photography festival.
Cox was at the launch of the Sony World Photography Awards 2009 Global Tour last night to receive his prize, which includes a trip to Cannes to attend “the annual Sony World Photography Awards accompanied by a parent”. At the presentation, held at the swishy Hempel Hotel, it seemed that there have been discussions in Cox’s household between his parents, as to which one should accompany him to Cannes in April. Dad sealed the deal, the Sony spokesperson told the crowd.
Cox is also ” a keen photographer and has been inspired by some works of Ansel Adams hanging in his home”. Judges for this year’s awards, who had been holed away in a hotel room wading through this year’s entries, made guest appearances at the opening and could be seen checking out last year’s winning entries. I have to admit that, bar a few bodies of work and individual images, the selection was a little disappointing. In fact, I thought that the commercial and fashion categories produced some of the stronger photography, on all levels.
The theme for the first Photomonth Youth Award is Children’s Rights which supports the UNICEF Convention of the Rights. Cox’s photograph illustrates ‘Every child has the right to be heard’ and shows a group of young Malawian students in discussion. It was taken on a school exchange trip to Malawi in March last year.
The runner up is Syeda Tahmina Raza, 17 yrs, from London. Her photo ‘Every child has a right to a childhood’ was taken on her mobile phone in a local park and shows two teenagers in a playground on the under 5s swings. Her image aims to portray that, no matter how old you are, you may always express your inner child.
Highly commended mentions to Soraya Homayoonpoor (17 yrs) Leeds ‘the right to clean water’; Yasmin Durrant (14 yrs) Bradford on Avon ‘the right to have beliefs’ and Maria Antoniadou (17 yrs) Burton on Trent ‘the right to be treated fairly’. The runner up receives a Sony Digital camera and the top five photographs including the winner, runner up and the three highly commended entries will be exhibited in the photomonth photo-open in October 2010.
Photographer Jane Hobson, who was celebrating her birthday yesterday, was there to interview photographer Nadav Kander and shoot the crowd for ePHOTOzine – so look out for her feature. Hobson also covered the opening of Jim Naughten’s Re-enactors at the Hotshoe Gallery.