The World Photography Organisation has today revealed the shortlisted photographers in the student category of its annual competition.
Featuring the work of 10 students at leading universities and higher education facilities from across the world, the student shortlist will go on display as part of the Sony World Photography Awards 2020 exhibition at Somerset House this April.
The students were challenged to submit a series of five to 10 images responding to two different briefs, the first being 'Invisible Lines' – to engage with the stories of people trying to break invisible barriers and structures whether natural, social or intellectual. For example, Reyad Abedin's The Name of My City is Dust and Smoke and Life features images of his native city Dhaka where rapid infrastructure development and the eroded boundaries between nature and manmade constructions have had a devastating effect on the ecological balance of the environment in and around the city.
For her project The Truth is in The Soil, Ioanna Sakellaraki from the Royal College of Art in Greece dwelled with the traditional communities of female professional mourners, or moirologists, inhabiting the Mani peninsula. Responding to personal grief and loss, Sakellaraki's images depict the silhouettes of the mourning women projected against abstract backdrops which convey our relationship to and acceptance of death.
The second brief, 'Sustainability Now', tasked students with producing a body of work connected to environmental sustainability. Highlights include Guardians by Fangbin Chen, which records efforts by the Chinese photographer's local community to contain the spread of coronavirus. Referencing the predation of wild animals as the likely source of the epidemic, Chen's photographs urge people to reconsider their relationship to the natural world. In Roots of Cause, Arantza Sánchez Reyes from Mexico reflects on the efforts of individuals living in Monterrey, known as one of the most polluted cities in Latin America, to strike a renewed balance with nature by practising a more sustainable lifestyle.
Other featured students include Micaela del Sol Angulo from Centro de la Imagen in Peru; Robin Ansart from Ecole Nationale Supérieure Louis-Lumière; Amy Davis from CityVarsity Cape Town; Ashley Tofa at The University of Auckland; Tobia Faverio from Italy's Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti, and Chip Skingley from the University of the West of England in Bristol.
All 10 shortlisted photographers have won Sony digital imaging equipment to help complete their project with the Student Photographer of the Year winner due to receive €30,000 worth of Sony photography equipment for their institution. The 2020 Student shortlist was judged by Tim Clark, curator, writer and Editor in Chief 1000 Words.