© Riccardo Budini, Italy, Professional Shortlist, Architecture, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
While eagerly awaiting for the results of the Iris d’Or award that will be announced tonight, we went to have a glimpse at the Sony World Photography Awards 2012 exhibition, as well as the other World Photo London previews.
William Klein, 2012, Still from the movie ‘Who are you Polly Maggoo’, 1966. © William Klein Courtesy HackelBury Fine Art, London
Our early conclusions? As the outstanding contribution to photography, awarded to William Klein, shows, there is something very classical about this 2012 edition. Classical does not mean a return to vintage techniques and aesthetics: the photographic topoi are rather taken back because of their intrinsic, timeless values.
© Jayden Tang, United Kingdom, Professional Shortlist, Fashion, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
The eternal dominance of black & white, abandoned places as sets (see Riccardo Budini, Jayden Tang, Renan Cepeda), overexposed garish colours, are all reinterpretations of previous photographic trends. The need for originality at its own sake is gladly put aside: quality of times, spaces and photographic effects prevails. Timeless images appear here and there – even stills from Luis Buñuel’s Un Chien Andalou (1929) fit perfectly with the work of contemporary photographers.
© Mitch Dobrowner, USA, Professional Shortlist, Landscape, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
As usual with the WPO, the ethical implications of photography – yet another topos – are not forgotten: projects such as ‘Save the Children’ or ‘Restart Japan’ mix charity and aesthetics.
© Kolyaskin Sergey, Russia, Shortlist, Tate Collectives, Youth, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
You will also find photography books’ awards, students’ awards, and a whole range of events you can participate to. The festival does represent the best of photography worldwide, and it is a great opportunity to see so many different countries and styles grouped in one space.
© David Airob, Spain, Professional Shortlist, Architecture, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
Still from © Vargha Mark Peter’s Moving Image Award piece
Quite ironically however, the piece that really stood out was Vargha Mark Peter’s winning Moving Image, a study of spatiality that combined photography with its nemesis, movement.
All in all a stunning photo festival that is worth a view (or many). The Sony World Photography Awards Exhibitions and World Photo London, at Somerset House, 27th April – 20th May. Stay tuned for the announcement of the winner, and visit the World Photo website for more informations!
© Peter Franck, Germany, Professional Shortlist, Campaign, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
© Renan Cepeda, Brazil, Professional Shortlist, Still Life, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
© Manuel Geerinck, US, Professional Shortlist, Conceptual, courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012
The photos that are not courtesy of Sony World Photography Awards 2012 are by Isa Jakob