Opening: February 1, 2019
Deadline: April 30, 2019
Entry fee: 1 to 5 images – $15 per image, 6 to 10 images – flat rate $90
Prizes: $500, $1,000, $3,000, participation in the exhibitions
Celebrating photojournalistic works…
Everyday, countless images are made of events, spot news, and photo stories by dedicated journalists and documentary photographers from all over the world.
Due to the selective and transient nature of reported news, many important, worthy stories and images do not see publication. In recognising the dedication and skill of photojournalists and documentary photographers, this year we seek the best ‘stand-alone’ portraits made in the pursuit of unfolding events or significant human stories in our Theme category UNYIELDING GAZE.
As photojournalism-inspired portraits, a meaningful title and a caption are to accompany the portrait image, detailing the photographer’s standpoint and the back-story behind the photograph.
The Open category invites all creative portrait photographers to define their own styles and originality unbound by theme, styles or genres.
Top three winners in each category will receive $3,000, $1,000 and $500 respectively. Both first-place winners will also receive a specially commissioned trophy, Being II by YUKAKO SHIBATA. We are also proud to announce our latest collaboration with Humans of KL to present RM500 to one Malaysian photographer as selected by its founder.
In addition, all 50 finalists will have their entries exhibited at the ILHAM Gallery in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in September 2019. To further elevate exposure by increasing visibility and be seen by audiences from new and emerging regions, KLPA is teaming up with several international photography organisations to present the 2019 finalists at the following festivals:
- June 2019 – Auckland Festival of Photography, New Zealand
- August 2019 – Mt.Rokko International Photography Festival, Kobe, Japan
- September 2019 – SUWON International Photo Festival, South Korea
- November 2019 – Photolux, Lucca, Italy
- November 2020 – Yakushima Photography Festival, Japan
Kuala Lumpur International Photoawards 2018 Winners
© Lucia Herrero, Spain
This series takes the form of a road movie. Reindeer-Man’s search for his own identity is the impulse that drives him to take to the road. The action takes place in Norway and, through Reindeer-Man´s adventures, the viewer explores a social landscape, a document. At the same time, the narrative on this graphic novel opens space for fantasy.
There is no script. It is a real expedition where unknown people found on the way have stopped their daily activities to help create a fable and become interpreters of themselves. I give my images a cinematographic touch. In this way, my subjects become my actors, landscapes look like sets and an intriguing surrealism shapes the documentary into a strange fiction.
The introduction of a fiction character makes real life shine with strangeness. Reindeer-Man, under his friendly figure, stealthily infiltrates in an everyday scene. He challenges the inertia of that context to reveal the invisible frames from which the common sense of the people is organized.
Reindeer-Man is an interference on common sense. Under his presence the invisible (and unquestioned) filters become evident. These filters are usually assumed automatically and through them we create certain criteria order and nature of the everyday.
Single Image Category
A group of boys swim in the Dal Lake of Srinagar, the only safe and free area during the curfew. It is one of the most militarised zone in the world where Kashmiris are trapped into an endless winter of suffering, mourning and hope for the day when, finally, the spring of Azadi – freedom will flourish in the valleys. I believe this image conveys a sense of calmness which is very uncommon to have when you are looking at most of the pictures that are coming from Kashmir.
The River Thames is not even the longest river in the British Isles and a mere pygmy in comparison with many other rivers in the world, yet its significance to British and world history is immense. My own fascination with the Thames has now taken a more concrete form. I have made it into a project and in the process of choosing, investigating and photographing a selection of cultural and historical narratives from along its banks.
From solo exhibition “MEDUSA”, on tropical marble and the doubleness of gaze in photography. The title “Perseus” is a familiar but jarring attempt to unpack the inevitable reference and heavy weight of marble to its links with western art. And in here, uncanny, reintroducing marble from the tropic islands in the orient as a place for ongoing mythologies and contemporary landscapes.
Photo Story Category
Portraits of joint families in Bangalore, India.
In India, the joint family is a sacred institution deeply rooted in Hindu heritage. In a traditional Indian joint family three or more generations live under one roof, sharing one kitchen, sometimes even one bank account.
Though extended families exist in most parts of rural India and some cities, joint families are harder and harder to find. Shifting family structures mirror the rapid rate of social change. But what still remains is the idea of ‘family comes first’ even in a fast-growing city like Bangalore. If you once start to search for the three generations under one roof, you will find a them everywhere.
For the family portraits in my project people were asked to dress up traditional and the individuals are arranged only in the living rooms so that you get a good impression of the relationship between the family members. Like in old family portraits the protagonists had to be very still throughout the very long exposure time of the taken photograph which makes everybody seem stiff, serious and still. The chosen families depict the spectrum of society and the public should be the audience.
Altogether the series consists of more than 40 family portraits, which are extended by personal details of the families and information about their social status. The work has been developed during the ‘bangaloREsidency’ of the Goethe-Institut Max Mueller Bhavan Bangalore and is funded by them.
In George Orwell´s 1984, an unperson is someone who has been vaporized, whose record has been erased. The people I chose to portray made the decision to disappear from their own Orwellian world – North Korea. Sometimes for ideological reasons and often by despair, they left behind a life that would disappear for ever. The road to South Korea is dangerous and can take years. Having arrived in South Korea, they often struggle to find a new identity – lost between their North Korean past and South Korean future.
To reflect this incredible transition, I chose to portray these defectors on an analog material that is not supposed to exist. Just as their situation, the negative of a polaroid is not supposed to be usable. It is only obtained through a series of chemical purifications of the back paper that reveal the original Polaroid image. This series of portraits is the first chapter of a project reflecting on North Korea, on the notion of borders and identity.
I have chosen to explore the world of fencing because of its intrinsic characteristics. “The art of not being touched and then art of touching, if you are able to.” (G Robert Aine, La science des armes, 1887).
Measurement, speed, respect.
Watching these young fencers of different ages I was often struck by the contrast between the delicacy of their small hands and the determined speed of their attack actions. In portraying them, I asked them to pose with their fencing equipment, often tiring them out by making them maintain a position before the camera.
For a moment, in the instant of the click, some maintained the awareness of the fencer, others remained children. For all of them, in describing this path of growth as athletes and individuals, I waited for the moment when they were at once close and distant, when their facial expression, through a small fragility or an element of strength, revealed their true self beyond the ‘mask’.
SingularityNet is currently working on creating an open source decentralized AI platform running on the blockchain. This network of AIs will provide AI as a service in a unprecedentedly diverse and open way. As well as a superior practical service, the SingularityNet will serve as a platform for the self-organization and emergence of increasing levels of Artificial General Intelligence, via the collaborative activity of AI developers and users’ communities and the AIs they build and use.
The company is led by Dr. Ben Goertzel, renowned as the father of Artificial General Intelligence, the leader of the OpenCog AGI project and the organizer of the prestigious annual AGI conference series.
We can imagine SingularityNET being a sort of an “AI App Store” where apps can not only serve users’ needs, but invoke each other’s help to complete their tasks or projects. The first complex AI system to be realized on the SingularityNET will be an AI brain for Sophia Hanson — the most sophisticated humanoid robot ever built. Saudi Arabia granted the status of Citizen to Sophia, that became the first robot to be recognized as a citizen.
The new version of Sophia’s mind, currently under development by SingularityNET in conjunction with Hong Kong firm Hanson Robotics, will be a core node of the blockchain. Her intelligence will be plugged in the network for everyone’s benefit and will also receive input and wisdom from everyone’s algorithms. Sophia’s mind will be constantly fed with new content from SingularityNET, while at the same time helping to power the network with its human-like intelligence.
Giulio Di Sturco got an exclusive access to the lab of Hanson Robotics in Hong Kong, where he can follow the making-of process and take portraits of Sophia in “her own house”.
Single Image Category Finalists
“Buena Vista 504” is a portrait series both of my maternal grandmother in Caracas and of the large house she has lived in after having immigrated from Portugal in the mid 50´s.
Tun M – Malaysia’s longest serving premier & his love for her.
Pudani Audi (b.1948) in her rented apartment, Yar-Sale village, Northern Siberia, Russia Pudani is part of a nomadic community of reindeer herders named Nenets, and like her ancestors, who have wandered the frozen landscapes of Northern Siberia for thousands of years, she roamed since birth. But today, in her old age, she spends most of her days in solitude, isolated from nature and her wandering community.
Every day, we put on a show to satisfy ourselves and others. We build our own roles by imitating and learning from what we see. “Projections” is one piece in a body of work that explores the performative aspects of identity and gender. The work as a whole is an ongoing collection of self-reflections throughout my journey of becoming a drag queen.
From the photo project “Hopelessness in Egypt”.
Maria is a participant of protest actions. She is against the fact that the Russian government spends enormous amounts of money on civil defence and armaments, on wars, at the same time it doesn’t pay enough attention to support science, medicine and education. A new surge of protest activity covered almost all regions of Russia in 2017. Most of the protesters today are from a new generation of youth: schoolchildren and students.
From “Masks” series. The picture was taken in October 2017 near lake Baykal, Siberia, Russia, during a 2-month artistresidence.
At the time, when I was making this portrait, my mother was severely limited in her sight. I wanted to hold on to this expression. Unfortunately she died one year after. The expression of this old woman can tell many stories. Photographing old and young people is always a challenge for any photographer. The picture was taken with a Leica R8 with the digital back.
The origin of my series was how young people deal with today’s media. As “digital natives”, their use of the information possibilities offered by the Internet and social networks comes easily and natural to them. At the same time, through the use of social media, information is also being fed with uncontrollable permanence to this media. The granting of information secures one`s own participation.
Every summer I visit a village where I have two nice “girlfriends.” This photo is from a long series called “Simple Motions,” where the two Russian “babushkas” have fun with the hula hoop, play football or do their gym.
The last Royal homebirth of Queen Elizabeth II was on March 10, 1964 to Prince Edward, born in the Belgian Suite of Buckingham Palace, England. Attended by midwife Helen Rowe and obstetrician John Harold Peel, it was the first of the Queen’s children to be active and conscious during the time when the “twilight sleep” era was phasing out. This photo recreates and spotlights the little known revelation that the Queen broke several traditions.
Husband sleeping on a chair. The woman’s expression is not happy.
Mahsa is a twenty-four years old actress from Tehran and yet has not played her favorite act on the silver screen. This photo was taken of her after a two-day camp by the Persian Gulf with a group of female friends, where she saw the ocean for the very first time. Here, far away from the city and all its restrictions for women, she does not need to keep the hijab, and can freely get tanned and swim in the Persian green of the ocean; for her, it is like to be born again.
The Naadam is a murderous horse race in Mongolia on a distance of over 20km in full sun and dust. The winner of the race brings glory and honour not only to his family but also to the entire local steppe community. The youngest winner was a 5 year old boy who defeated his rivals on horseback without shoes and saddle. Exhausted, he returns with his proudly father to local village to celebrate the huge success
The Black Mambas are an almost exclusively female anti poaching unit of 31 women and 1 men, which operates, unarmed, in Balule Nature Reserve, near Kruger National Park, in north-eastern South Africa. Their efforts are guided by the philosophy that the war against poaching cannot be won with guns and bullets, but through social advancement and the education of communities surrounding nature reserves.
Taken in early morning around the hectic docks of Dhaka, Bangladesh. I was captivated by this amazingly well dressed lady calmly wrestling with a hen bought from the nearby fresh market. Her portrait made more striking to me by the faces in the background contrasting with her own veiled appearance. Primarily i shoot with a 35mm prime lens, so always have to be close to the action.
In Italy, where I live, with the concept we are use to indicate something that can be viewed in different ways. It’s my personal view on the gender theory. In each diptych there’s the same model, made just by posing and makeup and a minimum of basic post production.
Hluvukani, South Africa, 2017.
Take care of the pantheons of families that have their deceased. The North Cemetery of Manila, inaugurated in 1904, is one of the oldest and largest cemeteries that the living in Manila have been forced to inhabit due to poverty and overpopulation. Currently, they house an estimated one million dead and have led to more than 10,000 Filipino families.
Bird Kite Man – There is a long standing tradition of kite flying in China, with a unique form of the art being kept alive by a community of enthusiasts in the Hankou Bund area of Wuhan. Kite builders have been skilfully making hunting hawk style crafts which mimic the characteristics of the birds in their natural environment; hovering, circling and diving above the Yangtze River.
This portrait of Lukasz was shot in the Harbour Arm in Margate and is part of the new “Ages Of Us” project focusing on the UK. The project looks at how our ideas, aspirations and attitudes change as we age and asks each sitter three questions about their Past, Present and Future. The Ages Of Us bench represents the three broad age groups we understand as “youth”, “middle aged” and “old”.
Day after day, dozens of farmers in the eastern Indian village Dhenga squat under a tent, wave flags and shout “This land is ours” and “Go back”. They are protesting the government’s plan to acquire their farmland to mine coal to supply to the power plants nearby. Last month, 13 of them were arrested and sent to jail for obstructing government work.
On assignment for Lessons for Life Foundation, (a charitable foundation focussed on education in Africa – www.lessonsforlifefoundation. org), I had spent a couple of days photographing pupils sitting their end of year exams at a government sponsored high school near Lyantonde, in a rural part of Uganda. It emerged that it wasn’t a riot that had destroyed the room. The day before had been the last exam for many of the senior pupils and it is a tradition for them to rip up their old exercise books
One of famous festivals in San Francisco is Pride festival. There were so many people from around the world who joined this festival.There was the outstanding drag queen who is so beautiful. I captured and did a candid of the moment that an American flag was moving with her lovely smile as America is a free country, and everyone has equal right. They can express their thoughts, feelings and abilities in the different way.
This is an amalgamation of two works by Vermeer. The “maid with milk jar” and the “young woman reading a letter”, called “maid” and “letter” subsequently.
Cindy breastfeeding her son Leo at home, Venice, November 2017. IN THE ROOM is a series of portraits taken in the moment a mother puts her child to sleep through breastfeeding. The project aims to describe the atmosphere of privacy and symbiosis that surrounds the subjects and the intimate physical relationship that this encounter develops.
Sofia is a friend of mine. I took this photo during a dinner at my house. She asked me a portrait of her. She saw a Scarlett Johansson photo and we started playing with the camera, trying to reproduce the same expression of the actress. When Sofia saw this photo, she was not so happy about the final result. I think it was because Sofia is a quiet person.I think that this photo, in some way, represent an unknown aspect of her personality.
A Muslim devotee arrives ahead of the Bishwa Ijtema by the banks of River Turag in Tongi, outside of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Spread over three days, the Bishwa Ijtema is the second largest Muslim congregation of the Muslim community after the Haj pilgrimage in Mecca. Devotees perform daily prayers while listening to scholars reciting and explaining verses from the Quran holy book.
Donna Lia – The project was carried out in an empty house in Rotterdam. The setting, full of magic and history, led me to create images that evoke the dream. The huge windows gave off a perfect natural light to illuminate the subject and to give a mild prominence of light and shadow to the entire scene. The basic idea was to portray the characters as individuals dreamy, lost within their own imagination, in a ‘unique vision’ and shared the same space.
FIBA Photo Contest