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Sony World Photography Awards 2009: Shortlist nominations announced

Press release   •   Feb 24, 2009 00:01 GMT

The shortlist for the 2009 Sony World Photography Awards is announced today, Tuesday 24 February. The list contains the names of 186 exceptional photographers from 43 different countries, all of them competing in a variety of categories in one of the most prestigious photographic competitions in the world.

The Honorary Judging Committee, comprising world-renowned photographers, curators, representatives from leading international photo agencies, publishers and critics made their selection from 36,546 professional and 25,370 amateur photography submissions.

Zelda Cheatle, Chair of Judges in the fine art genre, comments: “The judging and curating of the Sony World Photography Awards has been a truly rewarding experience, enabling us to see a wide variety of images from all over the world. From the most amateur of photographers to the experienced professional, each image has been put under intense scrutiny by some of the world’s toughest critics. It has been a privilege to work with the entire panel of judges. I believe that we all felt we had achieved an excellent outcome which will make a powerful statement as a collection.”

Astrid Merget, Events Director adds: “The quality and level of photographers this year has risen greatly and we are thrilled to see many top names as well as excellent new talent on the shortlist. Every one of the shortlisted photographers should be very proud to have been recognised by such an esteemed jury.”

In the professional competition, a maximum of ten photographers have been shortlisted in each of the 12 categories within the three subject genres: Photojournalism and Documentary (Current Affairs, Sport, Contemporary Issues and Arts and Entertainment); Commercial (Advertising, Fashion and Music) and Fine Art (Portraiture, Conceptual and Constructed, Natural History, Landscape and Architecture).

A shortlist of ten photographers is also announced in each of the eight amateur categories which are: Architecture, Conceptual and Constructed, Fashion, Landscape, Music, Natural History, Portraiture and Sport. This year, the amateur entries went through various pre-selection rounds by inspectors from iStockphoto, which were the official 2009 Pre-selection Committee, before being judged by the Honorary Judging Committee.

The Sony World Photography Awards is a truly global competition. From Argentina to Zimbabwe, over 60,000 photograph entries were submitted this year from 139 different countries.

The finalists in each of the categories will be announced on Tuesday 17 March, and will be honoured at the Sony World Photography Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes on Thursday 16 April. Also on the night, the 2009 winner of the L’Iris D’Or for Sony World Photographer of the Year will be announced and will receive $25,000 and professional Sony camera equipment. The winning amateur photographer will receive a $5,000 cash prize as well as Sony camera equipment. Another major announcement on the night is the winner of the Pince’s Rainforest Project (PRP) Award. The prize for the winning photographer is a fully-funded project to document the rainforests of the world. The final presentation will go to the acclaimed French photographer, Marc Riboud, winner of the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award.

The professional category finalists and amateur category winners will be showcased in the Winner’s Exhibition as part of the Festival @ Sony World Photography Awards, the week-long celebration of photography which takes place for this first time this year throughout the city of Cannes from 14th – 19th April 2009. The festival will also feature exhibitions, talks and book signings by leading photographers Elliott Erwitt, Marc Riboud, Vanessa Winship (last year’s L’Iris D’Or winner), Stuart Franklin, Bruce Davidson and Cedric Delsaux, amongst others.

Shortlist Nominations

Photojournalism and Documentary

SWPA Honorary Judging Committee: Sue Steward, photography critic (UK); Jurgen Schadeberg, photographer (Germany); Adrian Evans, Director, Panos Pictures (UK) and Bruce Davidson, photographer (USA)

Professional shortlisted photographers

Current affairs

  • Abel Ruiz de León (Spain)
  • Brigitte Grignet (Belgium)
  • Dominic Nahr (France)
  • Francesco Zizola (Italy)
  • Hui Min Kuang (China)
  • Li Fan (China)
  • Paolo Pellegrin (Italy)
  • Robin Hammond (UK)
  • Robin Utrecht (Netherlands)
  • Wojciech Grzedzinski (Poland)


  • Ezra Shaw (Australia)
  • Julian Abram Wainwright (Canada)
  • Juliet Howden (UK)
  • Li Fan (China)
  • Mick Tsikas (Australia)
  • Nir Elias (Israel)
  • Salvi Danés Vernedas (Spain)
  • Qing Zhao (China)

Contemporary issues

  • Andrew McConnell (Ireland)
  • Andy Spyra (Germany)
  • Chris De Bode (Netherlands)
  • Emiliano Mancuso (Italy)
  • Giulio Di Sturco (Italy)
  • Hartmut Schwarzbach (Germany)
  • Massimo Berruti (Italy)
  • Massimo Mastrorillo (Italy)
  • Kosuke Okahara (Japan)
  • Paolo Pellegrin (Italy)

Arts and entertainment

  • Amit Madheshiya (India)
  • Chiara Goia (Italy)
  • Kostas Mantziaris (Greece)
  • Ohm Phanphiroj (Thailand)
  • Soleyman Mahmoudi (Iran)

Amateur shortlisted photographers


  • Akos Kiss (Hungary)
  • Joachim W. Dettmer (Germany)
  • Josef Hinterleitner (Austria)
  • Lorenz Holder (Germany)
  • Marek Michalski (Poland)
  • Piotr Filutowski (Austria)
  • Purwanto Nugroho (Indonesia)
  • Sam Hendseron (USA)
  • Ubald Rutar (Czech Republic)


SWPA Honorary Judging Committee: Mark George, photographic agent (UK); Arnaud Adida, Founder Acte 2 Agence and Acte 2 Gallery (France); Gered Mankowitz, photographer (UK), and Grazia Neri, Founder and President of Grazia Neri Photo Agency (Italy)

Professional shortlisted photographers


  • Alfredo Leven Bulling (Chile)
  • Dustin Humphrey (USA)
  • Dylan Collard (UK)
  • George Simhoni (Canada)
  • Julia Fullerton-Batten (UK)
  • Kelvin Murray (UK)
  • Manon van der Zwaal (Netherlands)
  • Michael Schnabel (Germany)
  • Peter Franck (Germany)
  • Sharad Haksar (India)


  • Daniel Voelker (Germany)
  • Ekaterina Sarantseva (Russia)
  • Grzegorz Adamski (Poland)
  • Imre Varga (Hungary)
  • Jacek Kochański (Poland)
  • Jessica Hilltout (Belgium)
  • Micky Modo (Italy)
  • Nikola Borissov (Italy)
  • Piotr Fajfer (Poland)
  • Takaki Hashimoto (Japan)


  • Amiran White (UK)
  • Elen Miroshkina (Russia)
  • Felix Ozertsovski (USA)
  • Gordon Welters (Germany)
  • Hiroyuki Ito (USA)
  • James Sparshatt (UK)
  • Lauren Dukoff (USA)
  • Laurent Hini (France)
  • Majid Moussavi (Germany)
  • Will Robson-Scott (UK)

Amateur shortlisted photographers


  • Bryan Benoit (USA)
  • Christo Stankulov (France)
  • Deby Suchaeri (Indonesia)
  • Leonardo Horacio Fainbich (Argentina)
  • Jaclyn Adams (Australia)
  • Jaclyn Adams (Australia)
  • Jenni White (Australia)
  • Pyung-Hwa Hwa (United Kingdom)
  • Tiziano Ornaghi (Italy)
  • Tommy Clarke (United Kingdom)


  • Anna Stepanova (Russia)
  • Gunta Podina (Sweden)
  • Josef Hinterleitner (Austria)
  • Kushal Gangopadhyay (India)
  • Marcela Resendez Andarza (Mexico)
  • Paul Ditter (USA)
  • Rainer Ruber (Germany)
  • Sabhanaz Rashid Diya (Bangledesh)
  • Sabri Irmak (Canada)
  • Somenath Mukhopadhyay (India)

Fine Art

SWPA Honorary Judging Committee: Zelda Cheatle, portfolio manager and curator (UK); Mary-Ellen Mark, photographer (USA); Sarah Moon, photographer (France), and Philippe Garner, International Head of Photographs at Christie’s (UK)

Professional shortlisted photographers


  • Adam Panczuk (Poland)
  • Arjen Zwart (Netherlands)
  • Bela Doka (Hungary)
  • Carlo Gianferro (Italy)
  • Frederic Vanwalleghem (Belgium)
  • Hans de Vries (Netherlands)
  • Lisa Wiltse (Australia)
  • Martin Bogren (Sweden)
  • Roderik Henderson (Netherlands)
  • Tim Clayton (Australia)

Conceptual and Constructed

  • Alena Dvorakova and Viktor Fischer(Czech Republic)
  • Angelika Sher (Israel)
  • Branislav Kropilak (Slovakia)
  • Edgar Martins (UK)
  • Gregory Baker (Portugal)
  • Peter Puklus (Hungary)
  • Rita Soromenho (Portugal)
  • Saul Robbins (USA)
  • Stephen Zirwes (Germany)
  • Tamany Baker (UK)

Natural History

  • Alejandro Jose De Oliveira Sanchez (Venezuela)
  • Angel Febrero Diaz (Spain)
  • Dan Balilty (Israel)
  • Federico Veronesi (Kenya)
  • Lisa Maree Williams (Australia)
  • Renhui Zhao (UK)
  • sanchu chen Qiu (Spain)
  • Steve Morenos (Australia)
  • Yannick Dixon (UK)


  • Alessandro Puccinelli (Italy)
  • Andy Eaves (UK)
  • Bernhard Winkler (Germany)
  • David Zimmerman (USA)
  • Donato Notaristefano (Italy)
  • Edgar Martins (UK)
  • Pawel Mlodkowski (Poland)
  • Teru Kuwayama (USA)
  • Yvonne Seidel (Germany)
  • Zheng Xiao Yun (China)


  • Alessandro Cane (Italy)
  • Bjorn Opsahl (Norway)
  • Christof Pluemacher (Germany)
  • Daichi Ano (Japan)
  • Ivan Dario Herrera Gomez (Colombia)
  • Jean-Marc Caimi (Italy )
  • Jonathan Smith (USA)
  • Joel Micah Miller (Germany)
  • Michael van den Bogaard (Germany)
  • Xavier Delory (Belgium)

Amateur shortlisted photographers


  • Budi Prakasar (Indonesia)
  • Claire Martin (Austria)
  • Dimitriy Sarnikov (Russia)
  • Du Khanh Tran (Vietnam)
  • Harjono Djoyobisono (Indonesia)
  • José Luis Moreno Gámez (Spain)
  • Nikolay Zhelyazkov (Bulgaria)
  • Raul Muñoz Ramos (Spain)
  • Ronny Sen (India)
  • Stanislavs Olehno (Latvia)

Conceptual and Constructed

  • Andrea Wilken (Germany)
  • Azneem Adam (Maldives)
  • Deyan Stefanov (Bulgaria)
  • Eline Spek (Netherlands)
  • Fernando Javier Sturzenegger (Argentina)
  • Jose Luis Garcia Garcia (Spain)
  • Karas Cahill (USA)
  • Ljudmilla Socci (UK)
  • Vladimir Melnik (Russia)
  • Yulia Cherenkova (Canada)

Natural History

  • Alexander Safonov (Japan)
  • Alexander Safonov (Japan)
  • Faizan Khan (India)
  • Greg Lamont (Australia)
  • Jan Bergman (Sweden)
  • Ken Conger (USA)
  • Motiejus Salkauskas (Lithuania)
  • Petr Bambousek (Czech Republic)
  • Pia Hernø (Denmark)
  • Vincent Foong, (Singapore)


  • Alpur Çukur (Turkey)
  • Colin Campbell (UK)
  • Elemer Lelik (Hungary)
  • Fernand Domange (Belgium)
  • Gergely Kömöz (Hungary)
  • Giuseppe Parisi, (Italy)
  • Ildiko Baranyi (Romania)
  • Jose Luis Garcia Garcia (Spain)
  • Kyaw Thar (Myanmar)
  • Stephan Opitz (Germany)


  • David Watts (UK)
  • GJ Besselink (Netherlands)
  • Ivar Albaek Hansen (Denmark)
  • Nelson Izquierdo (Venezuela)
  • Osvaldo Hamer (Argentina)
  • P Matilde Barreira (Portugal)
  • Paola Antia (Colombia)
  • Sigurd Quast (Germany)
  • Tomasz Lazar (Poland)
  • Umberto Verdoliva (Italy)

Key Dates

3 March Student Focus competition finalists announced

17 March Professional and amateur category finalists announced

Sony Campaign Award winner announced

14- 19 April Festival @ Sony World Photography Awards in Cannes

16 April SWPA Gala Awards Ceremony

Awards presentation to professional and amateur category winners

Sony World Photographer of the Year – the L’Iris D’Or - announced

Amateur Sony World Photographer of the Year announced

PRP Award winner announced

Student Focus competition winner announced