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Sony World Photography Awards presents Stories

The Sony World Photography Awards are a photography competition supported by Sony and first held in 2007, with the aim of contributing to the development of photographic culture.

The Awards consist of four competitions: Professional (10 categories), Open (10 categories), Youth (ages 12 to 19, responding to a monthly brief) and Student, and provides platforms catered to every stage and genre of photography. In addition, the Awards recognise a person or a group of people that have made a significant impact on the medium of photography through the Outstanding Contribution to Photography, as well as local photographic talents from around the globe through the National & Regional Awards. All images entered into the Open competition are automatically considered for the National & Regional Awards.

Now in its fourteenth year, the Sony World Photography Awards is devoted to promoting both established and emerging photographers and giving them the exposure, visibility and opportunities to help advance them into the next stage of their career.

Every year tens of thousands of photographers submit their best imagery to the Awards and with the vast global community viewing the work, successful photographers have benefitted from publishing deals, gallery representation and worldwide exhibitions. The aim of the Sony World Photography Awards is to facilitate the meeting of creative minds so credible, innovative and exciting work is made.

This exhibition presents the works of four photographic artists who have enjoyed the career boosting benefits the competitions can bring to awarded photographers.

Tania Franco Klein Profile

Sony World Photography Awards 2018 Professional Competition, Creative, Shortlisted

Tania Franco Klein (b. 1990) started her photography praxis while gaining her BA in Architecture in Mexico City, which took her to pursue her Master in Photography at the University of the Arts London.

Her work is highly influenced by her fascination with social behavior and contemporary practices such as leisure, consumption, media overstimulation, emotional disconnection, the obsession with eternal youth, the American dream in the Western world, and the psychological sequels they generate in our everyday life.

Franco Klein's work has been reviewed and featured by international critique including ARTFORUM, CNN, L. A Times, I-D Magazine, The Guardian, The Paris Review, Aperture Foundation, The British Journal of Photography, and has been commissioned by clients like The New York Times, The New Yorker, TIME, FT weekend, New York Magazine, and Dior, amongst others.

Her work has been exhibited widely both in solo and group shows across Europe, the USA, and Mexico. Including prestigious venues like the Somerset House London, the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, and Aperture Gallery in NYC. Her latest exhibition Proceed to The Route which showcased a wide selection of her latest two series was presented by ROSEGALLERY and received enthusiastic reviews both in her home city of Mexico (2019) and Los Angeles (2020).

She was recently selected by W Mag as one of the 9 photographers to follow and has obtained the Sony World Photography Awards in two consecutive years, The LensCulture Exposure Awards, LensCulture Storytelling Awards, The Felix Schoeller Photo Award of Germany Nominee, FOAM Paul Huf Award nominee, and recently received the Photo London Artproof Schliemann Award as the best-emerging artist during Photo London fair 2018. Her first publication Positive Disintegration (2019) was nominated for the Paris Photo Aperture Foundation First Book Award.

Ioanna Sakellaraki Profile

Sony World Photography Awards 2020 Student Photographer of the Year

Ioanna Sakellaraki (b.1989) is a Greek visual artist and researcher. Her work investigates the relationship between collective cultural memory and fiction. Drawing emphasis on the photographic object, process and encounter, she explores the boundaries of a primitive, yet futuristic vision of places and people. She was recently awarded a Doctoral Scholarship for undertaking her PhD in Art after graduating from an MA Photography from the Royal College of Art.

She is the recipient of The Royal Photographic Society Bursary Award 2018 and was named Student Photographer of the Year by Sony World Photography Awards 2020. In 2019, she was awarded with the Reminders Photography Stronghold Grant in Tokyo and the International Photography Grant Creative Prize. Nominations include: the Inge Morath Award by Magnum Foundation in USA, the Prix HSBC, the Prix Levallois and the Prix Voies Off in France. Her work has been exhibited internationally with a recent solo show at the European Month of Photography in Berlin. Her projects have been featured in magazines such as The New Yorker and journals including The Guardian and Deutsche Welle. Most recently, she was invited as a guest speaker in the Martin Parr Foundation and the London Institute of Photography.

Alys Tomlinson Profile

Sony World Photography Awards 2018 Photographer of the Year

  • Born 1975, Brighton, UK
  • Lives and works in London, UK
  • Represented by HackelBury Fine Art, UK

Alys Tomlinson studied English Literature and Communications at the University of Leeds and photography at Central Saint Martins. She recently completed an MA (Distinction) in Anthropology at SOAS, University of London. Alys is most interested in the relationship between people and place, exploring themes of environment, identity and belonging.

Alys's work has been included in over twenty international exhibitions, most recently at Shandong Art Museum, China and National Portrait Gallery, London. She was named Sony World Photographer of the Year 2018 for her series Ex-Voto, a five-year project documenting Christian pilgrimage sites in Europe. Ex-Voto was published by GOST Books in 2019. In summer 2019, Alys was awarded the Public Prize in the Discovery Award at the Rencontres d'Arles.

Alys is a nominee in the 2020-2022 Prix Elysée and was awarded First Prize in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2020 for three portraits from her series Lost Summer. The series consists of 44 portraits of north London teenagers who had their proms cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has been self-published as a book. Alys is currently working on a Sundance-supported documentary feature film called Mother Vera and a photographic project exploring faith, ritual and tradition in Italian islands.

Natalia Wiernik Profile

Sony World Photography Awards 2013 Student Photographer of the Year

Natalia Wiernik (b.1989 in Krakow) is a visual artist and Associate Dean and lecturer for the Graphic Department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow. In 2017, she was awarded a PhD in Fine Arts. In her artistic practice, she analyzed issues related to the broadly defined concept of identity and its formation in the process of remembering, site-specific activities, and in the perspective of interpersonal relations at the level of family and society, e.g. in cultivated traditions.

She has received a number of prizes, including the Sony World Photography Awards. She was the scholarship holder of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage and the winner of the “Young Poland" scholarship and the Creative Scholarship of the City of Krakow.

She is the author of many artistic projects. Her latest work Wota is a part of the Permanent Gallery of “Polish art of the 20th and 21st century" at the National Museum in Krakow. Now she is working on a photobook. An album summarising the 10 years of portraying families for The Protagonists projects is planned for 2022.

The Sony World Photography Awards 2022 are open for entries. Deadlines for submission across the Awards' four competitions are:

Professional competition
January 14, 2022 13:00 GMT (22:00 JST)
Open competition
January 7, 2022 13:00 GMT (22:00 JST)
Youth competition
Last day of each month from June to December 2021
Student competition
November 30, 2021 13:00 GMT (22:00 JST)

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Related information: 
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Sony World Photography Awards 2021 Exhibition

- Part 1
Open, Youth and Student competitions, Japan National Award
- Part 2
Professional competition

Sony World Photography Awards 2020 Exhibition

- Part 1
Open, Youth, Student Competition, Japan National Award
- Part 2
Professional Competition (1)
- Part 3
Professional Competition (2)
- Part 4
Shortlisted entries from the Professional competition