Fiona Rogers and Vivienne Gamble discuss the inaugural Parasol Foundation International Photography Prize for Women – and why women-focused initiatives are still needed
“We had lots of different discussions about what the prize could be,” says Fiona Rogers, Parasol Foundation curator of women in photography at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A). “Did we want it to be something that was aimed at legacy artists? Did we want it to be well known artists? Or did we want to do something that was an open call to everyone?”
Rogers and her collaborators landed on the final option and, in late 2022, launched the inaugural Parasol Foundation International Photography Prize for Women. The award attracted over 1,400 submissions from across the world, each responding to the theme of Agents of Change – a celebration of photography’s role in affecting and documenting transformation, revolution and innovation.
The work of this year’s winners – Anya Tsaruk, Vân-Nhi Nguyễn, Gohar Dashti, Priyadarshini Ravichandran and Cynthia MaiWa Sitei – will soon go on show at south London’s Peckham 24 festival. Rogers hopes that the display will raise awareness of the photographers’ work and, via a financial bursary and programme of networking events, create increased access to the industry.