Istanbul Photo Awards 2019 exhibition opens at UN


Anadolu Agency launched an exhibition at United Nations headquarters in New York featuring the works of award-winning photojournalists who competed in the international Istanbul Photo Awards 2019.

The event, hosted by high-level Anadolu Agency executives, opened with the attendance of Turkey's UN Ambassador Feridun Sinirlioglu.

Addressing the opening ceremony, Sinirlioglu said: “We are very pleased to see the growing interest that Anadolu Agency’s annual photo awards have enjoyed over the years.”

Some 15,000 people from over 100 countries applied for this year’s competition, he called, and congratulated the jury members and those whose photos are on display.

Sinirlioglu highlighted that the photos depict many different emotions and expressions from the devastating impacts of natural disasters on people to the hope in the eyes of migrants who risk their lives for a better future.

“This exhibition puts the human phase on some of the most challenging issues that we as member states deliberate everyday here under the roof of the UN,” Sinirlioglu added.

He said that a photo may worth a thousand words with all its reality.

5th exhibition of Istanbul Photo Awards 2019

Bahadir Saracgil, an executive board member of Anadolu Agency, said that the event was the fifth exhibition of Istanbul Photo Awards 2019.

“As Anadolu Agency, we have witnessed photojournalists’ occupational devotion in our 100 years of journalism history. For this reason, we have initiated our Istanbul Photo Awards projects to reward the efforts of photojournalists and to encourage them,” Saracgil said.

Stating that submissions have opened on Nov. 1 for the sixth time, Saracgil said: “It is proud and exciting for all my colleagues to see that it [the competition] has a greater impact every year across the world.”

“In 2019, photographers from over 100 countries, including war, conflict and disaster areas such as Syria, Mexico, France and Indonesia, applied for our contest with 15,000 photographs.

“The jury, consisting of experienced editors and photojournalists, rewarded 12 photographers from 10 countries,” he said.

“We are happy to exhibit the same photos in another continent, while the exhibition we opened in Tokyo last month is ongoing. This situation proves the universality of news photography, which is one of the starting point of our contest,” Saracgil expressed.

He voiced hope that striking photos presenting the summary of the last year will be submitted for the contest, of which applications will be open until Jan. 31, 2020.

Saracgil also said that after three-month application process, most impressive photos of the year will be announced in March.

“I would like to thank in your presence to Turkish Cooperation and Cooperation Agency (TIKA) and Turkish Airlines who carry our country's flag with pride all over the world and have always supported this important project since its first day,” he said.

Great pride for Anadolu Agency

“It is a great pride for us. This is the fourth exhibition of Anadolu Agency at the UN,” said Ali Turker Pirtini, another executive board member of Anadolu Agency.

He expressed hope other similar works of the agency and Turkey’s representatives to be exhibited at the headquarters in the future.

“Power of photograph reaches everywhere. It gives great acceleration in every aspect in terms of giving desired messages in a very accurate and impartial manner,” Pirtini said.

Among the attendees of the exhibit were the UN staff, foreign mission representatives and foreign journalists.

Istanbul Photo Awards exhibition opens in Tokyo


Anadolu Agency on Tuesday launched an exhibition in the Japanese capital Tokyo which features the works of award-winning photojournalists who competed in the international Istanbul Photo Awards 2019.

The Yunus Emre Institute's building in Tokyo is hosting the Istanbul Photo Awards exhibition, this year’s first overseas exhibition, sponsored by the Turkish Airlines and the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA).

"It is proud and exciting for all of my colleagues to see that the competition has a greater impact every year around the world," said Mustafa Ozkaya, Anadolu Agency's deputy director general, referring to the beginning of submissions for the 2020 event.

In 2019, Ozkaya said, photographers from more than 100 countries -- including Syria, Mexico, France and Indonesia -- and including war, conflict and disaster-hit regions, applied to contest with approximately 15,000 photographs.

Stating that he is pleased to open an exhibition in Tokyo, Ozkaya said that the last exhibition of 2019 will be held in New York in December.

Ozkaya thanked Turkey’s national flag carrier Turkish Airlines (THY) and Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) for assuming the official sponsorship of the contest as well as Yunus Emre Institute for hosting it.

"There is a photograph that reflects the world, there is a photograph that depicts a relationship. Surely there are many languages of the photographs," said Hasan Murat Mercan, Turkish Ambassador to Japan.

Mentioning the deep-rooted ties between Turkey and Japan, Mercan said that economic and cultural exchange between the two countries is growing.

Among the attendees of the opening ceremony were Muhammet Salih Demirkan, Anadolu Agency's deputy chairman of the board; Ural Yesil, director of Human Resources and Administrative Affairs; Huseyin Tuna, director of Yunus Emre Institute Tokyo; and Hiroki Sugita, a representative of Kyodo news agency, Jiji Press Photo President Taisei Ogawa and Jiji Press Photo International Relations head Hirofumi Motoyama.

Tokyo will host the exhibition until the end of the year.

Visitors will be able to view the winning images of the annual international photography contest, organized by Anadolu Agency.

Entries in the contest depict political incidents, migration crisis, natural disasters and striking life stories worldwide.

Istanbul Photo Awards 2020 open for submissions


Anadolu Agency's international news photo contest to accept submissions through Jan. 31, 2020


Submissions have opened for Anadolu Agency's 2020 Istanbul Photo Awards, the news agency announced.

The international photo contest will accept applications until Jan. 31, 2020, according to a statement from the agency. This year marks the sixth anniversary of the contest, which is open to professional photographers.

The Istanbul Photo Awards is organized by Anadolu Agency, which has worked with a great number of photojournalists throughout its 100 years in journalism and aims to support the profession of photojournalism.

Photographers across the world are expected to submit images capturing global events over the past year. Mainly focusing on news and sports photos, the contest has four categories: Single News, Story News, Single Sports, and Story Sports.

Next March, an international jury will meet to select the winners who will receive awards yet to be announced.

Previous contestants of the competition think it was "successful" in terms of contributing to global visual news.

Socrates Baltagiannis, a freelance photojournalist and documentary photographer based in Athens, Greece described the contest as one of the "most notable annual competitions," in a written interview with Anadolu Agency.


"I do believe that it is a successful contest and that through the years of its existence has succeeded to become one of the most notable annual competitions regarding photojournalism worldwide," said Baltagiannis, who was one of the finalists in the Single News category in the 2016 Istanbul Photo Awards.

'High quality photos'

The quality of the photos is always of a high level, both in terms of pictures and the subjects they depict, said Baltagiannis.

He underlined that the contest contributed to global visual news in many ways, including giving the chance for people to "see, think and evaluate major events", as well as offer the means -- via its prizes -- for photojournalists to continue their work, on account of the difficulties faced by the profession in recent years.

The Istanbul Photo Awards, as with all photojournalism contests, plays "a big role" in continuing to promote quality photojournalism, Istanbul-based Australian photographer Chris McGrath told Anadolu Agency in a written interview.

McGrath won this year for his series "A Journalist's Murder" taken in the wake of the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

Underlining the importance of the competition in terms of "creating a visual archive of historic events," he said: "For many photographers, it is an outlet for presenting the work they've done over the year, work that will enter the archives of photo contests globally and continue to keep those stories in the public eye. And that's a very important part of photojournalism - creating a visual archive of historic events.

"Over the years, from what I have seen, the Istanbul Photo Awards has endeavored to make itself into a truly international photo award. The jury has supported international stories and issues by selecting the most truthful, relevant and unbiased photographs or stories of the year," he said.

McGrath said he planned on entering the competition again this year.

"As a staff photographer for Getty Images, at the end of every year, I enjoy the process of looking through the stories I have done and editing the best sets of photographs.

"I think the process can also help young photographers take a little step back at the end of the year and look at what they have done in the year and learn from that," he said.

Hosam Salem, an Istanbul-based Gazan freelance photojournalist, also hailed the "successful" and "distinguished" contest.

Salem received the Young Photojournalist award in 2017 with his photograph "Street Training in Gaza".

Asserting that the contest showcased the most powerful and distinguished photos and events throughout the world, he said: "After I won, I decided to participate the following year and the next."

"I will participate this year [...] with photos from outside of Gaza this time," he added.

The winner of Photo of the Year in Single News category will be awarded $8,000, while winners in other categories will be given $5,000 for first prize, $3,000 for second prize, and $1,500 for third.

All previous winning photos are available on www.istanbulphotoawards.com and professional photographers can apply for 2020 contest on the same website.


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