Photographer Mads Nissen has won the World Press Photo of the Year 2014 award with a photo picturing a gay couple in Russia, a country where the LGBT community is met with discrimination from the masses and the government alike.
The World Press Photo of the Year is one of the most prestigious photojournalism competitions. It is organized by the World Press Photo foundation and it was established 60 years ago.
The first prize is not won solely by reporting a story through photography or by capturing a beautiful, well-framed image. Photographers must combine these and must do it in an outstanding manner. This year, the winner is Danish photographer Mads Nissen, courtesy of a portrait of an intimate moment between a gay couple in Russia.
World Press Photo of the Year 2014 award goes to Mads Nissen
The grand jury of the World Press Photo of the Year 2014, led by The New York Times’ Michele McNally, has announced that photographer Mads Nissen is the winner of this year’s contest.
The Danish photographer’s winning photo is a portrait of a gay couple sharing an intimate moment in St. Petersburg, Russia. His image was submitted to the “Contemporary issues” category, as the LGBT is being ostracized by the Russian government and its population.
Like Jon and Alex, portrayed in the winning photo, there are many LGBT people in Russia who are now facing legal repercussions, not just social harassment. Instead of abolishing discrimination of any kind, Russia has adopted an anti-gay law in 2013, which bans “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations”.
Photographer Mads Nissen has decided to create a special photo project, called “Homophobia in Russia”, which details the lives of LGBT people in “modern Russia”.
The winning photo has been captured with a Canon 5D Mark III at a focal length of 35mm using an f/2.2 aperture, 1/200th of a second shutter speed, and 1,600 ISO sensitivity.
About the World Press Photo of the Year 2014 edition
More than 97,000 images have been submitted by more than 5,600 photographers from 131 countries. The photo of Jon and Alex has been selected as the winner and will be celebrated at the 2015 Awards Days in Amsterdam, Netherlands on April 24-25.
Photographer Mads Nissen will receive a prize of €10,000 as well as a DSLR camera from Canon. The first-prize winners will be present at the gala in Amsterdam and they will receive a prize of €1,500.
The full list of winners is available at the official World Press Photo website.