Portrait of Humanity is a unique photography award. Seeking images that capture life across the globe, it has a singular mission at its core: to unite the global community through the power of photography. By inviting images that capture shared human experiences – be it laughter, joy or love – we hope to prove that there is more that unites us than sets us apart.
1854 Media, publisher of British Journal of Photography, and Magnum Photos, the two teams behind the award, have welcomed photography leaders from countries across the globe to act as judges and ambassadors. We’ve brought together a selection of inspiring people – including photographers, curators, editors, and gallery directors – who represent a cross-section of the photography world.
The judging panel will be tasked with choosing the 50 winning images that will tour the world in 2019/ 2020, and the 200 shortlisted images to go in the Portrait of Humanity book, published by Hoxton Mini Press and distributed worldwide.
Among them is Sarah Leen, the current and first female Director of Photography at National Geographic Magazine. Leen is no stranger to photography awards. Her career, featuring twenty years of being a freelance photographer for the magazine, has seen her win numerous accolades, from the Pictures of the Year competition to the prestigious World Press Photo Awards.
She’ll be judging alongside Sao-Paulo-based Thyago Nogueira, editor of Brazil’s biggest photography journal, Zum Magazine, and curator of numerous exhibitions on photography veterans such as William Eggleston. Other curators on the panel include Nigeria-based Adenrele Sonariwo, founder of Rele Art Gallery and Rele Art Foundation, who curated the first ever Nigerian Pavilion at the 2017 Venice Biennale. Fiona Shields (UK) is the Head of Photography at The Guardian newspaper, which caters for a vast international readership.
Our ambassadors are international leaders in photography, who share Portrait of Humanity’s values of individuality, community and unity, and who want to spread our message to their followings.
Italy-based Mimi Mollica is an award-winning documentary photographer and multimedia artist, whose work has been featured across the international press, including The Guardian Weekend Magazine, Financial Times Weekend Magazine, The New York Times Lens, and Newsweek Japan. Running themes in his work are identity and community, and how they are impacted by social and political change.
Venezuelan photographer Verónica Sanchis Bencomo, currently based in Hong Kong, is also acting as a Portrait of Humanity ambassador. She is the founder of Foto Féminas, a pioneering online platform promoting the work of Latin American and Caribbean women photographers.
David Levene (UK), a two-time winner at the Press Photographer’s Year Award, has worked for The Guardian and for international charities, among them Oxfam and Medicins-Sans-Frontiers. He’s joined by fellow Guardian photographer Sarah Lee, and photographer Sungwon Kim, based in Tokyo.
Entries to Portrait of Humanity are now closed. Shortlisted & winning photographers will be announced in May 2019. Learn more about the award here