“The photographers we have selected who are part of the exhibition are the vanguard – they are the next generation,” says Brendan Embser, managing editor of Aperture. He’s talking about the professional finalists in this year’s Sony World Photography Awards, which he helped judge alongside three other photography experts: Emma Lewis, assistant curator, Tate; Liu Heung Shing, founder of the Shanghai Center of Photography; and Isabella van Marle, head of artist & gallery relations at Unseen Amsterdam.
The Sony World Photography Awards are divided into four categories – professional, student, youth, and open – which this year received over 326,000 submissions from 195 countries and territories. The shortlisted work will go on show at the 2019 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House, London, before going on tour around the world; this exhibition will also include a section dedicated to work by Nadav Kander, who has been awarded a prize for his Outstanding Contribution to Photography.
The winners in each of the 10 professional categories will be announced on 17 April, the day before the exhibition opens, with the overall winner of the Photographer of the Year prize set to win $25,000. “When reviewing work at the Sony World Photography Awards, I was immediately attracted to the different approaches within certain categories,” commented van Marle. “I think everyone should visit the Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition because it has a great diversity of work, with some really clever and beautiful projects.”
The Student competition was judged by: Jason Baron, creative director of photography, BBC Creative; Bruno Bayley, managing editor, Magnum Photos; and Jeff Hamada, founder & editor, BOOOOOOOM. “What’s been so interesting to see in this year’s student competition is the range, variety and diversity of the images on show, not just in the subject matter, but in the genre of photography,” commented Baron. “Urban landscapes, lit portraiture, photo essays and still life to name but a few.”
The 2019 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition is on show from 18 April until 06 May at Somerset House, London. Tickets cost from £5 for a weekday lunchtime slot www.worldphoto.org/sony-world-photography-awards-exhibition