The World Press Photo Foundation has announced the four global winners of World Press Photo 2023, the most prestigious photojournalism and documentary photography contest in the world, whose exhibition can be visited in Barcelona from November 9 to December 17.
These are the most outstanding images in the four categories of the contest: Single Photographs, Stories, Long-Term Projects and Open Format.
The Photo of the Year
World Press Photo of the Year goes to Mariupol Maternity Hospital Airstrike, by Ukrainian photographer Evgeniy Maloletka for Associated Press, a poignant photograph showing Iryna Kalinina, an injured pregnant woman, as she is evacuated from a maternity hospital after a Russian air strike in Mariupol (Ukraine).
Unfortunately, the baby, who was named Miron (“peace”), was stillborn. Just half an hour later, his mother also passed away. A report by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) concluded that the hospital was deliberately attacked by Russia, causing three deaths and some 17 injuries.
The Photo of the Year is one of the images that are part of The Siege of Mariupol, a report by the same author, which had already been distinguished as the best Story by the European regional jury, among the regional winners of World Press Photo 2023, previously announced.
The best Graphic Report of World Press Photo 2023
The World Press Photo for Story of the Year goes to Danish photographer Mads Nissen for The Price of Peace in Afghanistan, for Politiken/Panos Pictures.
This report calls attention to the harsh living conditions of the Afghan people after the withdrawal of US and allied forces in August 2021 and the return to power of the Taliban. As a result, all foreign aid was stopped and billions of dollars of government reserves held abroad were frozen, collapsing the already fragile Afghan economy. The intense droughts of 2022 exacerbated the crisis and, currently, half of the country’s population does not have enough to eat and more than a million children are severely malnourished according to the UN.
In 2021, Mads Nissen also won World Press Photo of the Year with an iconic photo of the pandemic, The First Embrace, and was a guest of honor at our exhibition in Barcelona.
World Press Photo Best Long Term Project 2023
The World Press Photo Long Term Project Award goes to Armenian photographer Anush Babajanyan with Battered Waters for VII Agency/National Geographic Society, who has spent years documenting the resilience of the people of four landlocked countries in Central Asia. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to the north, and Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to the south, have competed for shared water supplies, and their water management problems have been exacerbated by the climate crisis.
World Press Photo Best Open Format 2023
The World Press Photo Open Format Award goes to Egyptian photographer Mohamed Mahdy for Here, the Doors Don’t Know Me, a collaborative web project and elegy to a community way of life on the verge of de desaparecer, where the artist uses photographs taken by him and also found images. The project explores the effects of sea level rise in the local community of Al Max, a fishing village in Alexandria (Egypt). In 2020, the Egyptian government began to evict its inhabitants, demolishing their houses and endangering the collective memory and local culture. Its inhabitants often talk about the messages inside bottles they found and Mohamed Mahdy encouraged them to write their own messages, creating an archive of memories for future generations.
A global jury, made up of the presidents of each of the six World Press Photo 2023 regional juries, has been in charge of selecting the four main prizes. These global winners have been chosen from 24 regional winners, previously announced.
Photojournalists invited to the World Press Photo 2023 exhibition in Barcelona
Both the global and regional winners are part of the international exhibition that will soon arrive in Barcelona.
And, precisely, two Spanish authors saw their work recognized as regional winners in Europe. The young documentary photographer César Dezfuli (Madrid, 1991) won a World Press Photo 2023 in the Open Format category of the European region with “Passengers”, a project started in 2016 and still ongoing on the complex reality of migration in the central Mediterranean, and the photojournalist Emilio Morenatti (Zaragoza, 1969) received an honorable mention for “War Wounds”, a very personal report on civilians wounded in war in Ukraine.
Both authors will be present as guests in Barcelona, as well as the photojournalist Santi Palacios, who this year has been a member of the European regional jury of the World Press Photo 2023. The three will be part of the complementary activities of the World Press Photo 2023 exhibition in Barcelona.
The Barcelona exhibition will be organized by the Photographic Social Vision Foundation, for the nineteenth consecutive year, and will be held from November 9 to December 17 at the CCCB – Center for Contemporary Culture of Barcelona, with the main collaboration of the Banco Sabadell Foundation. Tickets will go on sale next October.