The Sony World Photography Awards 2024 has named the esteemed Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado as the recipient of the Outstanding Contribution to Photography Award 2024. Salgado, who is recognised globally for his unique black-and-white imagery, has enjoyed a distinguished career spanning over half a century.
Salgado’s work features thought-provoking portrayals of indigenous communities, labourers, migratory movements and breathtaking natural landscapes. His images, which are a testament to the power of photojournalism, have been exhibited in major cultural institutions and appeared in global publications.
Salgado’s work will feature in the Sony World Photography Awards exhibition that will take place at Somerset House in London, from 19 April to 6 May 2024. His specially curated collection will showcase key moments from his five-decade career, including early projects like ‘Gold’ (1986) and ‘Workers’ (1993), as well as later series such as ‘Genesis’ (2011) and ‘Amazônia’ (2019).
Born in 1944 in Aimorés, Brazil, Salgado initially pursued a career in economics before fully dedicating himself to photography in 1973. Working with renowned agencies such as Sygma, Gamma, and Magnum, he developed a unique style influenced by his upbringing in rural Brazil, with its expansive natural landscapes and open skies shaping his approach to visual storytelling.
In the 1980s and 1990s, Salgado embarked on a series of global expeditions, producing several influential photo series. These include ‘Gold’ (1986), documenting the Serra Pelada gold mine, and ‘Workers’ (1993), portraying the rigours of manual labour in various industries. His project ‘Exodus’ (2000) captures the complexities of global migration and displacement, and these works will feature prominently in the upcoming exhibition.
After witnessing the ravages of conflict in the Congo and Rwanda in the mid-1990s, Salgado took a break from photography to focus on environmental restoration. Along with his wife Lélia, he founded the Instituto Terra to rejuvenate the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. This experience inspired his return to photography, leading to the creation of ‘Genesis’ (2011) and ‘Amazônia’ (2019), both of which will be showcased in the exhibition.
On receiving the award, Salgado expressed his honour and the importance of photography to communicate our shared human experience.
The Outstanding Contribution to Photography award recognises significant contributions in the field of photography. Past recipients include illustrious names such as William Klein, William Eggleston, Elliott Erwitt, and Rinko Kawauchi. Sebastião Salgado’s inclusion in this list highlights his indelible mark on the world of photography.
Sony World Photography Awards 2024
There are 8 categories in the Sony World Photography Awards 2024. They are open for entry now and entry is free. The deadlines to enter are as follows:
- Student competition closes 30 November 2023, 13:00 (GMT)
- Youth competition closes 5 January 2024, 13:00 (GMT)
- Open competition (including National & Regional Awards and Alpha Female Award) closes 5 January 2024, 13:00 (GMT)
- Professional competition (including Latin America Professional Award and Sustainability Prize) closes 12 January 2024, 13:00 (GMT)
The Sony World Photography Awards 2024 will announce the winners of its Student, Youth, Open, and Professional competitions on 18 April 2024.
Follow the link to enter the Sony World Photography Awards 2024.