Winner of the Unseen Dummy Award announced

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Amsterdam’s annual celebration of photography Unseen Photo Fair closed for the year earlier this month, but not before showcasing some of the most interesting work in contemporary photography. During the fair and festival, Yoshinori Masuda won the Unseen Dummy Award for his photobook, Tiger 2. For his project, the Japanese photographer visited a zoo to depict two tigers in a state of repose, hinting at ideas around the dangerous state of nature and the  unsettling power of the gaze.

Much of Masuda’s thinking behind Tiger 2 was influenced by an eclectic jumble of high-minded influences, including mathematical laws and scientific theories, but he was initially prompted by the simplest of reasons: “I was attracted by [the tigers]. Therefore I photographed them.”

Masuda was immensely grateful for receiving the award, but as he tells the BJP, the most pleasing aspect of the award is the larger audience the prize affords: “I just want people to have the book in their hands, and enjoy it until it falls apart.”

Masuda was chosen by an international jury, consisting of Paul van Mameren (Managing Director, Lecturis), Simon Baker (Senior Curator of International Art & Photography at Tate), Paul Kooiker (artist) and Anna-Alix Koffi (Off the Wall founder). They noted in their jury statement: “Tiger 2 is a strange, daring and challenging book, which literally stages and re-stages the act of looking from its front cover to its last page. It was, given the high quality of both the long-list and shortlist, inevitably a controversial choice, but it is certain to be an instant classic!”

Masuda’s book will be published by Dutch photobook publisher Lecturis, who will handle all printing, sales and distribution. The launch of the publication takes place during Unseen Photo Fair the following year.

Unseen and Lecturis joined forces in 2012 to give photographers from across the globe to have their work published. Entrants to the award submitted a dummy copy of their photobook, in the form of anything from a simple printed scrap book to a hand-crafted object. The previous winners include Shinji Otani, (The Country of the Rising Sun, 2012), Heikki Kaski (Tranquillity, 2013) and Simon Rimaz (Unusual View of Unknown Subjects, 2014).

Want to get your work seen by the most influential people in the industry? Enter the BJP International Photography Awards 2016. For more details and to enter, visit