The World Photography Organisation has announced the finalists and shortlisted photographers in the Professional competition for the Sony World Photography Awards 2023. The Awards’ Professional competition seeks to ‘reward exceptional series of work both for technical skill and an original approach to storytelling’.
The winner of Photographer of the Year 2023 is chosen from the Professional finalists and will be announced on 13 April. A selection of images by finalists and shortlisted photographers will be exhibited as part of the Sony World Photography Awards at Somerset House from 14 April to 1 May 2023.
See some of the finalists below:
Sony Professional Competition 2023: Documentary Projects finalist
Untitled by Tariq Zaidi, United Kingdom
Series name: Inside the Hamar Weyne Fish Market – the Heart of Mogadishu, Somalia
A man carries a large fish on his head from the old port to the nearby Hamar Weyne fish market in Mogadishu, Somalia. This market is the busiest in the city due to its proximity to the port.
The Hamar Weyne fish market, in the heart of Mogadishu, is a vital hub for the fish trade. Located just a few metres from the old port, it is the busiest and most important fish market in the city, with hundreds of fishermen relying on it to sell their catch. Despite the challenges posed by the ongoing civil war and a lack of investment in the sector, the market remains a key source of employment and economic activity.
Sony Professional Competition 2023: Wildlife & Nature finalist
City Howl by Corey Arnold, United States
Series name: Cities Gone Wild
A coyote yips aggressively at an off leash dog park in San Francisco, California. This park is surrounded by densely placed residential buildings on all sides and is the unlikely territory for a pack of urban coyotes. Coyotes have become a greater presence in San Francisco, but conflicts with dogs and cats, who occasionally become prey are also increasing.
Cities Gone Wild is an exploration of three savvy animals — black bears, coyotes and raccoons — that have uniquely equipped to survive and even thrive in the human built landscape while other animals are disappearing. I tracked these animals in cities across America to reveal a more intimate view of how wildlife is adapting to increased urbanisation.
Sony Professional Competition 2023: Creative finalist
Purity Ntetia Lopores by Lee-Ann Olwage, South Africa
Series name: The Right To Play
Portrait of Purity Ntetia Lopores, 14, a student at Kakenya’s Dream school, who says: ‘I love art and would love to pursue music in the future.’ The flowers are used to create a playful world where girls are shown exuding pride and joy and in this way the flowers are also used to reclaim their futures and dreams and to re-imagine the narrative of child marriage.
What do girls dream of? And what happens when a supportive environment is created where girls are empowered and given the opportunity to learn and dream? The Right to Play creates a playful world where girls are shown in an empowered and affirming way.
Worldwide, it is estimated that around 129 million girls are out of school and only 49 percent of countries have achieved gender parity in primary education, with the gap widening at secondary school level. Every day, girls face barriers to education caused by poverty, cultural norms and practices such as FGM, poor infrastructure and violence.
For this project, I worked with girls from Kakenya’s Dream in Enoosaen, Kenya who have avoided FGM and child marriage, showing what the world can look like when girls are given the opportunity to continue learning in an environment that supports them and their dreams.
Sony Professional Competition 2023: Still Life finalist
Untitled by Carloman Macidiano Céspedes Riojas, Peru
Series name: La Visita (The Visit)
‘Today I prepared dried lamb, as it is my son’s favourite dish.’
‘Don’t bring anything, I just want you to come and visit me’ is one of the phrases most repeated by the inmates of Picsi prison, located in the city of Chiclayo in northern Peru. But many visitors do not want to arrive empty-handed, despite the strict controls.
Guisella D explains how ‘I get up at five in the morning to cook fried fish with cassava, which is one of my husband’s favourite dishes. Then I go to the market to buy permitted fruits like bananas and oranges, and by six in the morning I am in the queue to enter the prison. Sometimes it is stressful: the lines are endless and the murderous sun and the earth ruin your skin. The only consolation is to arrive and meet my partner again. Then you forget about the shameful controls, and the sun, until next Sunday’.
These images represent different visits; the tenderness, affection and the company of parents, brothers, children and wives. The one who visits also suffers.
Sony Professional Competition 2023: Portfolio finalist
Headwear in Our Pool by Ines Vansteenkiste-Muylle, Belgium
Series name: Communities I Love
This is part of a 2022 collaboration between myself, Marc Martha and Eveline Briand, which aims to represent people who wear hijabs or other headpieces in the water, either because of their religion or to protect their hair. We were shocked by the number of public pools that did not accept this. However, Aqua Heaven – a private sauna – accepted us because they often have people with hijabs in their pools.
These are pictures from a small series I started myself. Each one is a collaboration, or a depiction of a community. My recent work has seen me work with the LGBTQ+, Afro-Caribbean and Muslim communities. I allow my curiosity to lead me in my work and talking to the people/community I’m depicting is a very important part of the process.