After sharing its Open and National Award winners, The World Photography Organisation has now announced the overall winners in the Sony World Photography Awards 2020. Hundreds of thousands of images have been submitted, and the jury has now selected the best of the best, naming six overall winners as well as winners in the Professional, Open, Student and Youth competitions.
This year, The Photographer of the Year title is awarded to Pablo Albarenga from Uruguay for his series Seeds of Resistance. Other than the flattering title, he will also receive the accompanying $25,000 prize.
Seeds of Resistance is a body of work which pairs photographs of landscapes and territories in danger from mining and agribusinesses with portraits of the activists fighting to conserve them. In 2017, at least 207 leaders and environmentalists were killed while protecting their communities from projects threatening their territories. According to a 2018 report by Global Witness, most of these cases occurred in Brazil with 57 assassinations being recorded, of which 80% were against people defending the Amazon.
Albarenga’s series explores the bond between the defenders and their lands – a sacred area in which hundreds of generations of their ancestors rest. In the photographs, the main characters in the stories are seen from above, as though they are laying down their lives for their territory.
The 2020 SWPA competitions have received 345,000 images from 203 territories all over the globe. More than 135,000 of them were entered for Professional competition only. The jury has selected the winners from the finalists, and we bring you the images below.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, there will not be an exhibition this year to promote the winners. However, a virtual exhibition has already been online waiting for you to check it out. the World Photography Organisation has also launched the Stay Connected page. It features a varied program of online initiatives, activities and resources which aims to support and inspire audiences and photographers recognized at this year’s Awards. You can see the images and find out more on the Organisation’s website.