Shortlisted images for the Palm* Photo Prize 2020 contest

Palm* Studios recently announced the shortlisted images for its 3rd annual Palm* Photo Prize competition. Over 7,000 images were submitted from all over the world. 108 were selected for the shortlist and are now in the running for the annual prize. All of these photos are for sale as prints with 100% of the profits going directly to the artists.

The judging panel consists of Alastair McKimm, editor-in-chief of i-D, Karen McQuaid, senior curator at The Photographers’ Gallery, Sarah Allen, assistant curator at Tate Modern, David Campany, Jessica Lopez, photo editor at Polaroid Originals, and Lola Paprocka, founder of Palm* Studios.

Brooklyn, New York-based photographer Dino Kuznik is in the running for the annual prize.

20 overall award winners for the Judge’s Panel prizes, Peoples Choice Award, and Peoples Choice Instagram Award will be announced on May 30th. DPReview reached out to a handful of these shortlisted photographers and got the story behind their nominated images plus the information on the gear they used. Don’t forget to check out all the nominees and support their work.

Shortlist, 2020: Dimitri Djuric (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: The image is a type of pylon for a high tension overhead power line. It’s part of an ongoing series of buildings and structures photographed at night.

Gear: Fujifilm XH1 camera and a big flash.

Shortlist, 2020: Ashley Bourne (Bristol, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: My work centers around storytelling within society, drawing on ideas from personal experience to form the basis of my projects.

Gear and Film: Pentax 67 medium format camera, a 90mm lens, and Kodak Portra 400 film.

Shortlist, 2020: Mark Mahaney (San Francisco, California, United States)

Artist Statement: This is an image from my first book, Polar Night. The project is a passage through a rapidly changing landscape in Alaska’s northernmost town of Utqiagvik. It’s an exploration of prolonged darkness, told through the strange beauty of a snowscape cast in a two month shadow.

The unnatural lights that flare in the sun’s absence and the shapes that emerge from the landscape are unexpectedly beautiful in their softness and harshness. It’s hard to see past the heavy gaze of climate change in an arctic town, though Polar Night is a visual poem about endurance, isolation and survival.

Gear: Pentax 645z camera with manual focus 75mm lens.

Shortlist, 2020: Joseph Balestra (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States)

Artist Statement: At the end of 2019, I spent a month out west in California as a way to wrap up the year and reflect. During this time I created a few portraits of local artist and personalities. This portrait was created on Venice beach of Artist Floyd Zion, a musician and model based out of LA. The shoot was approached in what is still to this day one of my favorite ways to work with a subject. No planning, just chasing light and enjoying a day of collaboration.

Gear and Film: Mamiya AFD II camera, Kodak film, self-scanned.

Shortlist, 2020: Alexander Beer (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: Too many people stigmatize women who wear the hijab. There is nowhere in the the Holy Quran that tells them not to kick ass as human beings. These amazing girls and women are all taekwondo black belts.

Gear and Film: Asahi Pentax 67 6×7 camera, with 120 film.

Shortlist, 2020: Caitlin Chescoe (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: My Father has been a life long KISS fan, we’ve grown up with bands like KISS playing throughout the house and it is very much a part of who we are as a family. On this occasion myself, Mum, Dad and Sister all dressed up as the band to watch a gig in Munich for KISS’ last ever world tour. We had front row seats and my Dad nearly cried he was so happy. This image represents an incredible memory that we all share together.

Gear: Hasselblad 500c/m camera.

Shortlist, 2020: Jan Kühr (Oslo, Norway)

Artist Statement: Ripe fruits and vegetables constitute a wild boar feast in the mountains in Alpilles, South of France.

Gear and Film: Mamiya 7 II camera with an 80mm lens, Kodak Porta 160 ISO film.

Shortlist, 2020: Rinchen Ato (Cambridge, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: Rinchen Ato’s photographs are an exploration of her heritage and the fast-evolving culture of the Khampa people. Over multiple trips, spanning the past two decades, she has documented family, friends and the struggles and celebrations of the wider community of Tibetan people living in Kham.

It is an incredible place. The region is mountainous, consisting of high altitude grasslands, a remote and rugged land with a society where little had changed for centuries until recently. ‘My father often jokes that he was born in the Bronze Age and even in the 20 years I have been photographing there I have seen how quickly Kham has evolved.’ The inhabitants were mostly nomadic but, with rapid modernization, mass migration to the town of Jyekundo སྐྱེ་དགུ་མདོ་ and huge earthquake in 2010 which obliterated the area, many villages are now abandoned or only have a few families remaining.

Deeply aware of the visual tropes used by foreign photographers, depicting Tibetans as ‘other,’ Ato’s work employs a sensibility which comes from her connection to the community, a community which is familiar to her.

The project has been described as a mix of nostalgia and realism. ‘To photograph is the act of capturing a moment and this is my attempt to record and hold on to something precious, like a love letter, an homage, to the people I hold most dear and the country that I adore.’

The project started in a naïve way. Twins are an obvious subject for photographers as the very notion suggests the mirror-like rhetoric that photography has with the world. It’s also interesting because when you shoot subjects so similar, under scrutiny, it highlights the differences between them and how we’re all individuals. But as the project now stretches over such a long period it has evolved into something more, an uninterrupted sequence, a body of work in it’s own right marking the passage of time. As they have grown and changed, so too has the environment around them, yet the resemblance between the girls remains constant.

In this image they were 15. We’d finished lunch and were sitting around chatting but this year was different. They dashed off to their room to get ready and were gone about half an hour. They came out wearing these incredible gingham dresses and matching watches. It felt like a real transition, they’d become conscious of their appearance. We stood on the balcony overlooking the town. The rabbits were a birthday gift and they wanted to hold them, and there it was, the shot.

Gear: Hasselblad 503CXI camera with film.

Shortlist, 2020: Lotte Van Raalte (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

Artist Statement: This January (2020) I published my very first book, BODY. Over the course of 16 months I photographed 46 women in their most natural form including my mom. This picture was taken on the 16th of October 2018 at the beach in The Hague, the city where I grew up. My mom – who is terminally ill – had just told me some bad news. Minutes after, we were driving to the beach, during which I was still processing what she had just said.

As soon as we started shooting she was running, dancing and playing. One of her oldest friends was at the beach too, so I photographed them together. My mom absolutely loves the beach and although she’s ill, looking at the images afterwards, she looks so full of life and joy. It’s one of my favorite images of the book and I still am fascinated by the fact that her body actually created mine. The title of this image is ‘Judy and Lily.’

Gear: Sony a7RIII camera.

Shortlist, 2020: Jon Ervin (Brooklyn, New York, United States)

Artist Statement: This project aptly titled ‘Boys Will Be,’ which references the common phrase ‘Boys Will Be Boys,’ is an ongoing photographic journey exploring the various ways in which men perform and construct their identity. In this project I use the camera as an active agent to witness these gestures of masculine performance through documentation, portraiture, and staged scenarios.

By turning the camera on these men, I am encouraging them to perform for the ‘other.’ That performance, framed between the lines of the viewfinder, is a subjective choice to display their constructed identity to the camera, myself, and the viewer. The use of staged adolescent experiences creates scenarios where innocent horseplay can become something of consequence and for impalpable power dynamics that are threaded throughout our society to become tangible.

It is in those moments where boys learn their own power and how it can be used to influence others. Despite the relation to “Boys Will Be Boys,” this project does not adhere to the belief of so-called excusable male behavior that is at times aggressive, violent, and toxic; instead it has importantly left off the last word — ‘Boys.’ That distinction allows the men of this project to simply be.

Gear and Film: Pentax 67II camera with a 300mm f/4 lens and 1.4x teleconverter, Portra 400 film.

Shortlist, 2020: Dylan Lewis (Richmond, Virginia, United States)

Artist Statement: This image is from my larger body of work, a photo book titled ‘Dusker.’ The images in Dusker act as physical expressions of interior states. Situated between exhalation and incantation, they construct a space where the ontological unease of ‘documentary’ photography, the aestheticizing eye of fiction, and the emotional texture of dreams within an always-already fractured reality intertwine.

Shortlist, 2020: Pat Martin (Los Angeles, California, United States)

Artist Statement: It was Easter afternoon and we heard Jeff was feeling lonely. She had thought that her whole family had forgotten about her, but to her surprise, we all showed up with a pack of American Spirits, wine, and a pair up bunny ears. Jeff may be 98, but she’s still a party-girl and loves some good company.

Gear and Film: MF Pentax 67II camera, and printed in a color darkroom. All Kodak film, chemicals, and chromogenic darkroom paper.

Shortlist, 2020: Hua Jin (Montreal, Canada)

Artist Statement: This photo is part of my long-term and ongoing project ‘My Big Family.’ A project I document my extended families in China.

I call the woman in the picture ‘Aunt,’ she is a distant relative who lives nearby. When I took this photo she was trying to dig some coppers and wires from the demolition sites where the old farmer houses had been destroyed. She could make a small amount of money in the market by selling these materials.

While local people were trying to make small amounts of money from the ruins that used to be their homes, the government along with big companies were trying to redesign and reuse the land by building residential and commercial high rises, meanwhile, to change the traditional life-styles in the rural area.

Gear: Plaubel Makina W67 camera

Shortlist, 2020: Kamila Lozinska (Bristol, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: This is a candid shot of my dear friend Jasmine basking in the sun.

Gear: Mamiya RZ67 camera.

Shortlist, 2020: Laura Pannack (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: At the age of 16, Baruch chose to leave his Orthodox Jewish community and to study. The dramatic and challenging decision forced him to question his identity and future. Einstein says: ‘The important thing is to not stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.’ The project explores how we choose our paths in life and questions how much control we have to change who we will become. The project was commissioned by 1854 Media and supported by Panasonic.

Gear: Panasonic SR1

Shortlist, 2020: Imogen Forte (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: Last Summer, I moved out of my house, put my stuff into storage, and spent three months traveling the coast of England documenting the people and places I encountered. I wanted to explore more of the country I’d always called home and familiarize myself with new people and new places.

I met this girl in Cornwall, where she was stood in the street with her family. I approached and asked if she wanted a portrait and she agreed. I spotted this amazing backdrop in the cafe beside us and so we popped inside to have a drink and a chat and take some portraits.

Gear: Mamiya RZ67 camera.

Shortlist, 2020: Tais Sirote (London, United Kingdom)

Artist Statement: Tais Sirote, also known as Taisido, is a London-based photographer specializing in still-life and product photography. She has a background in graphic design and loves anything related to self-publishing books. Her style has always shown attention to lighting, showing her strengths on taking bold images, and having an eye for detail. Her pictures are sometimes mistaken for 3D renders and attempt to trick the eye of the viewer to make you wonder how it was taken.

Gear: Canon 5DS

Shortlist, 2020: Valeria Moreno (Richmond, Virginia, United States)

Artist Statement: This image is from a photo series meant to serve as an image as film sequence portraying young womanhood.

Gear: Panasonic Lumix G7 camera.

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