Last night, the Sony World Photography Organisation announced the winners of its 2018 competition. The coveted Photographer of the Year Award was given to Alys Tomlinson for her personal body of work titled Ex-Voto; a series of images taken at pilgrimage sites in Lourdes (France), Ballyvourney (Ireland) and Grabarka (Poland). It’s a contemplative set of large-format black-and-white portraits of pilgrims and their environments, and smaller still lives of the objects associated with their faith.
German photographer Candida Höfer was recognised for her Outstanding Contribution to Photography. Höfer’s practice has focused on the poetic documentation of public buildings and cultural spaces, like opera houses, libraries and theatres.
A rare selection of Höfer’s large-scale colour photographs, images from Tomlinson’s Ex-Voto and all the winning and shortlisted work will be on view at London’s Somerset House till May 6 2018. Together, all the winning work is a reminder of a versatility of the photographic medium. Here’s a selection from the winners:
Besides recognising the work of professionals, the Sony World Photography Awards recognise the work of hobbyists with an open category, as well as celebrating young talent with two special awards.
Samuel Bolduc from Canada was named Student Photographer of the Year, for a series of staged photographs that highlight the burden of plastic waste on the environment.
Megan Johnson won the Youth Photographer of the Year, which is an award given to a photographer between the ages of 12 and 19. Her winning image was shot in the hills near her home with an iPhone 7.
The Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition will be on view at London’s Somerset House till May 6 2018. Tickets £6 to £18