03 April 2019

April's Photography Grants and Awards

03 April 2019 - Written by Simon Hall

Award season is hotting up in the photography industry with many exciting opportunities open for entry this April. Read our curated awards guide to learn all about them. Featuring Prix Levallois, the Kassel Dummy Award, and the Getty Images Reportage Grant, among many others.

Prix Levallois / Deadline: 2 May / No entry fee

© Vasantha Yogananthan, from the series Myth of Two Souls. 2016 Prix Levallois winner

Created in 2008, the Prix Levallois is a springboard for young international photographic creation, looking to support artists under the age of 35 working with any form of photo-based expression. “Today, photography is, without a doubt, the most frequently-used means of capturing the world around us, representing its landscapes, inhabitants, political events, festive gatherings, beliefs and so on” write Catherine Dérioz and Jacques Damez, the artistic directors and curators of the Prix Levallois. “In the selection of projects nominated for the Prix Levallois, the ongoing objective is to take into consideration the diversity of photographic practices as well as the quality, the originality and the demanding nature of the work” they continue.

As in all the previous editions, an independent jury will assign both a Laureate Award and a Special Mention. The panel this year is composed of Stéphane Decreps (Deputy Mayor for Cultural Affairs, ville de Levallois), Rip Hopkins (Photographer and Prix Levallois sponsor), Marion Hislen (Commissioner for Photography, French Minister of Culture), Anne Lacoste (Director of the Institut pour la Photographie, Hauts-de-France), and Caroline Stein (Head of sponsorship, curator of the Banque Neuflize OBC Collection). A separate Audience Award will be assigned following an online vote that gives a voice to all photography enthusiasts. The Laureate winner will receive a €10,000 Grant while the Special Mention awardee will win a DSLR camera. Photographs of the three winners will be displayed at the Galerie L’Escale in Levallois between October and November. The final deadline is 2 May. No entry fee. Visit for more information.

Kassel Dummy Award / 24 April / Entry fee: €36

© Michael Danner, spread from the book Migration as Avant-Garde. 2018 Kassel Dummy Award winner

Fotobookfestival Kassel has launched the 10th edition of the Kassel Dummy Award, inviting all photographers worldwide to submit unpublished photobook mock-ups. In the first round of judging, 50 books will be shortlisted by a jury (yet to be announced) at the end of April and this selection will then be exhibited at several international photography events. From these 50 titles, three winners will be chosen by a second independent panel during PhotoEspaña, to be held in Madrid throughout June this year.

The winning book will be produced and published by Fotobookfestival Kassel’s new cooperative partner MAS, the leading Turkish photobook printing and binding house from Istanbul. Second and Third Prize winners will each get a production grant worth €2,000 and €1,000 respectively for future projects. There is an entry fee of €36 per book with options for the return of your dummies after the competition has concluded. Registration closes on 24 April. To find out more, visit

Getty Images Reportage Grant / Deadline: 15 May / No entry fee

© Paula Bronstein, from the series Afghanistan: The Silent Victims of a Forgotten War. 2017 Getty Images Reportage Grant winner

Getty Images’ dedication to excellence in photojournalism means that they know creating and managing in-depth photography assignments requires time, freedom, support, and considerable resources. This Reportage Grant continues the tradition of their Editorial Grant program, which, since its foundation in 2004, has been aimed solely at supporting independent photojournalists around the world by providing them with the creative freedom necessary to pursue work that is of personal importance.

The judging panel in this, the 12th edition, features Anastasia Taylor-Lind (award-winning photographer), Fiona Shields (Head of Photography, The Guardian), Andy Greenacre (Director of Photography, The Telegraph Magazine), Sunil Gupta (award-winning photographer), and Hilary Roberts (Senior Curator of Photography, Imperial War Museum). Together they will award three US$15,000 Grants with the selection of the winners to be based on their determination of the applicants’ ability to execute the proposed project with a compelling visual narrative in a documentary format, taking into consideration the quality of the portfolio, the project's merit, and professional ability. Submissions must include a 300 to 500-word project summary, a short biography, and between 20 to 25 original images either related or unrelated to the proposal. The deadline to apply is 15 May. No entry fee. Further information can be found at

Women Photograph Grants / Deadline: 15 May / No entry fee

© Tasneem Alsultan. 2018 Women Photograph Grant winner

First established back in 2017, the Women Photograph Grants aim to elevate the exposure of female, female-identifying, and non-binary visual journalists. The first, presented in collaboration with Nikon, offers five US$5,000 endowments to support the production of photography projects – either new or in-progress – from visual journalists working in a documentary capacity. Of the five available, one will be earmarked for a non-binary or transgender photographer. Applicants are encouraged to submit a story rather than singles as part of their submission, and images need not be related to the project proposal. Multimedia works are welcomed. The jury this year is comprised of Marcia Allert (Dallas Morning News), Nariman El-Mofty (Associated Press), Nicole Frugé (San Francisco Chronicle), Karla Gachet (Photographer), and Nick Kirkpatrick (The Washington Post).

For the second Grant, Women Photograph has partnered with Getty Images to award US$10,000 to support an ongoing documentary project from a professional photojournalist who has demonstrated a long-term commitment to their story. Applicants should submit a portfolio of 20 to 25 images indicating that a substantial amount of work has already been completed, and that there is a clear vision of what further work is needed to complete the project. Additional consideration will be given to applicants who display a personal connection to, and engagement with, the communities they are covering. The jury has yet to be announced.

For both grants, half of the funding will be disbursed at the beginning of the project, and half upon completion. The deadline to apply is 15 May. No entry fee. Learn more at

Female in Focus / Deadline: 9 May / Entry fee US$25 - US$60

© Alice Mann, from the series Drummies

Running for the first time this year, Female in Focus is a new award from 1854 Media and the British Journal of Photography that aims to highlight the quality of female image-makers around the world. “Female in Focus is our way of addressing gender imbalance in the industry” write BJP. “While 80% of photography graduates are female, only 15% of professional photographers are women. On top of this, eight out of nine photography award winners are male. Our mission is to open up the world of photography to diverse talent, and to empower women and those who identify as women to step behind the lens.”

The award is divided into two categories: Single Images and Stories. 20 winning singles and two winning stories will be exhibited in a group show held at leading gallery United Photo Industries in Brooklyn, New York City for a month over October and November. During this period, the biggest names in the industry descend on New York City for the PhotoPlus Expo looking for the best emerging talent. The two winners in the Stories category will be flown to NYC for the exhibition opening. The judging panel in this inaugural competition includes photographers, gallerists, and educators. They are Veronica Sanchis Bencomo (Founder of Foto Feminas and PHmuseum contributor), Devika Daulet Singh (Director of PHOTOINK), Hannah Starkey (Photographer), Laura Roumanos (Co-founder of United Photo Industries), Brandei Estes (Director, Head of Photographs department at Sotheby’s), and Neo Ntsoma (Photographer and Educator). Depending on how many works you wish to enter, the application fee falls between US$25 and US$60. The deadline is 9 May. Visit to learn more.

Alarum / Deadline: 7 April / No entry fee

© Dimitri D’ippolito for Ardesia Projects

Independent photography initiative Ardesia Projects is currently accepting submissions to its open call, Alarum, the winners of which will be exhibited in Berlin as part of the Soft Power Platform: European Artist Convention on 28 and 29 April.

The concept of the exhibition is centred around the question of how images shape contemporary society. “We would like to collect contributions responding to the question: what are you afraid of?” write the curators. “Fear is often associated with something negative, an unpleasant emotion. We fear what could hurt us, what threatens our identity or what could endanger our very own existence. Whilst fear can be a powerful tool which can be used to manipulate, it can also provide an occasion to bring people together to face a compelling danger. We would like to develop the concept of “fear” as something constructive, a signal that something of our time needs to be changed.”

The curatorial team are looking for contributions engaging with the concept of fear in order to create a collective reflection upon what endangers our lives, communities, and future. The theme can be interpreted in numerous ways: from projects dealing with climate change to personal projects concerning intimate or domestic dimensions and everything in between. Applications must include one to five images and a brief description of the submitted material. The deadline is 7 April. No entry fee. Additional information is available at

Canon Giovani Fotografi Award / Deadline: 10 May / No entry fee

© Claudio Cerasoli, from the series L'Oro di Gondo. 2018 Canon Giovani Fotografi Award winner

Open solely to young Italian photographers between the ages of 18 and 35, the Canon Giovani Fotografi Award returns for its 14th edition with Tell Us a Story as the main theme. “Stories are a source of inspiration and their narration through the photographic language is a challenge that excites and stimulates” say the award’s organisers. “The theme is open to multiple interpretations and points of view because the challenge is to present new works that are a free expression of creativity” they add.

The traditional Photography Award and Multimedia Award categories return once more, the winners of which will both receive tutorship sessions with industry leaders, Canon digital imaging equipment, and a place in the official exhibition program at the 2019 edition of Cortona On The Move, set to take place from 11 July to 29 September. Also, for the first time this year, Canon will be granting a Special Mention to a story dedicated to the world of sport, the subject of which is open for interpretation by applicants. The seven-member jury includes Arianna Rinaldo (Artistic Director, Cortona On The Move), Renata Ferri (Photo Editor, Io Donna), Giulia Ticozzi (Photo Editor, La Repubblica), Maysa Moroni (Photo Editor, Internazionale), Manila Camarini (Photo Editor, Repubblica), Naima Mancini (Journalist and Photo Editor, Sportweek), and Massimiliano Ceravolo (Professional Imaging Group and B2C Marketing Director, Canon Italia SpA). The application deadline is 10 May. No entry fee. More information can be found at



Luma Rencontres Dummy Book Award Arles 2019 / Deadline: 13 April / No entry fee

The Luma Rencontres Dummy Book Award provides professional photographers and visual storytellers with an opportunity to fund the production, publication, and promotion of a dummy photobook. The prize is endowed with a €25,000 production budget - including €3,000 for the author or authors - to cover all expenses incurred by the book’s creation (adjustment work, layout, printing, and binding). The 2019 winner’s dummy book, as well as those of the finalists, will be exhibited this summer during Les Rencontres d’Arles, from 1 July to 22 September.


Happiness ONTHEMOVE Prize. By Cortona On The Move / Deadline: 14 April / Entry fee: €10

Cortona's eighth annual Happiness ONTHEMOVE Award invites photographers to submit work with happiness as the central theme. This award aims to reveal those everyday moments that seem ordinary on the surface, yet nevertheless make us smile and offer a window into a joyous reality. Cortona encourages applicants to reflect upon the theme and develop ideas related to the multifaceted nature of the concept using their own personal vision, creativity, and sensitivity. The award winner will receive a monetary prize of €3,000 plus exhibition space at the next edition of COTM in 2020.


2019 Voies Off Awards / Extended Deadline: 15 April / Entry fee: €30 - €90

Running in conjunction with Rencontres d’Arles every year, Voies Off Festival presents an alternative program of exhibitions and supporting events focused on the promotion of work from the emerging generation of artists and photographers. The Voies Off competitions, now in their 24th year, are an important part of this programming, aiming to give support to new creation and to offer the best conditions for photographers to enjoy the festival’s very large network of expert professionals. 50 photographers will be chosen to participate in six screenings by an international jury with three independent prizes also on offer.


Portrait of Britain / Deadline: 18 April / No entry fee

Created by British Journal of Photography and digital media company JCDecaux, Portrait of Britain is an award-winning photography exhibition that celebrates the rich tapestry of people that make up Great Britain, by turning their stories into public art. The award invites photographers of any level and of any age to submit portraits that reveal the many faces of modern Britain. 100 winning entries will be showcased across JCDecaux’s network of digital Out-of-Home screens throughout the country.


W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography / Deadline: 20 April / Entry fee: US$50

The W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography is presented annually to a photographer whose past work and proposed project follows the tradition of W. Eugene Smith’s concerned photography. The Judges will be looking for a photographer whose proposal seems most likely to use exemplary and compelling photojournalism (possibly supplemented by or incorporating multi-media) to address an issue of importance and impact related to the human condition. For 2019, the amount of the Grant will be US$40,000 and an additional US$5,000 Grant will be awarded as a Fellowship.


W. Eugene Smith Grant for Student Photographers / Deadline: 20 April / Entry fee: US$1

The W. Eugene Smith Grant for Student Photographers is designed to encourage and support students whose visual stories echo W. Eugene Smith’s compassionate photography. Special consideration will be given to work that promotes social change and that embraces new technologies and image distribution, and that seeks to integrate the tradition of photography and social change with contemporary practice. The Grant amount this year is US$4,000.


Inge Morath Award / Deadline: 30 April / No entry fee

The Magnum Foundation and the Inge Morath Estate have teamed up once again to launch the 19th annual Inge Morath Award, a US$5,000 Grant given to a female photographer under the age of 30 to support the completion of a long-term documentary project. One awardee and up to two finalists will be selected by a jury composed of Magnum photographers, the Executive Director of the Magnum Foundation, and the Inge Morath Estate.


Aaron Siskind Foundation Individual Photographer’s Fellowship / Deadline: 31 May / Entry fee: US$25

The Aaron Siskind Foundation is offering a limited number of Individual Photographer's Fellowship grants of up to US$15,000 each, for artists working in photography and photo-based art. Recipients will be determined by a panel of guest judges on the basis of artistic excellence, accomplishment to date, and the promise of future achievement in the medium in its widest sense. The Foundation seeks to support visual storytellers who demonstrate a serious commitment to the field.


Every month we curate a list of what is coming up in the world of photography awards. Aimed at early, mid-career, and professional photographers, this list offers details of the most exciting opportunities. To stay up to date, subscribe to our newsletter by registering your email address in the space at the bottom of this page.

Written by

Simon Hall

Reading time

16 minutes

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