04 February 2017

February Awards Guide

04 February 2017 - Written by Simon Hall

The PHmuseum 2017 Grant, Voies Off Prize, Alexia Foundation Student Grant, Head On Photo Awards, Grand Prix Images Vevey, and the Anja Niedringhaus Courage In Photojournalism Award are just some of the most exciting competitions open for entry this month. Read on to find out more.

PHmuseum 2017 Grant

© Fyodor Telkov, from the series Tales (PHM 2016 Grant Honourable Mention)

The PHmuseum Grant is an annual international initiative designed to support photographers, promote their projects and further their careers.

In the 2017 edition Main Prize, a jury comprised of Sarah Leen (Director of Photography National Geographic Magazine and Partners), Emma Bowkett (Director of Photography at the Financial Times FT Weekend Magazine), Alejandro Chaskielberg (Photographer) and Ihiro Hayami (Director of Tokyo Institute of Photography) will award a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize worth £7,000, £3,000, and £1,000 respectively and up to six honourable mentions.

The New Generation Prize, for photographers under 25 years of age, to be juried by Poulomi Basu (Photographer and Director of Just Another Photo Festival), Kate Bubacz (Senior Photo Editor for BuzzFeed News), Alejandro Kirchuk (Visual Journalist and Senior Photo Editor at PHmuseum), and Fiona Rogers (Global Business Development Manager at Magnum Photos International), this year comes with £1000 in cash prizes and a mentorship program with Maggie Steber.

The awarded projects will be also published on World Press Photo’s Witness, projected at Just Another Photo Festival, and promoted via PHmuseum channels. Additionally, Arianna Rinaldo – the Artistic Director of leading photo festival, Cortona On The Move – will select a project from among the submissions that will be granted a solo show at the festival in 2017. The prize includes travel expenses, accommodation, and promotion through Cortona OTM channels.

The deadline is less than two weeks away: 15 February (fee: £30). Apply at

2017 Voies Off Prize

© Daesung Lee, from the series Futuristic Archaeology (2016 Voies Off Prize winner)

Running in conjunction with Rencontres d’Arles every year, Voies Off Festival presents a series of exhibitions, projections, and panel discussions designed to promote and disseminate the work of emerging talents. The Voies Off competitions, now in their 22nd year, are an important part of this program, offering a new generation of image-makers an opportunity to gain exposure to curators, gallery owners, fine art photography dealers, press, and editors.

60 photographers will be chosen by an international committee to show their work during the festival’s nightly screening sessions. From this selection, a jury comprised of industry professionals will choose the winners of The Voies Off Award, which comes with a €5,000 monetary endowment; The SAIF Discovery Award, a prize worth €2,500; and the Award, the recipient of which will be granted the publication of a portfolio on the website.

Deadline: 15 February (free entry). Go to to learn more.

Alexia Foundation Student Grant

© Nathaniel Brunt, from the series #shaheed (2016 Alexia Foundation Student Grant winner)

The Alexia Foundation Student Grant is designed to provide current college photographers with an opportunity to produce a compelling series that promotes cultural understanding and has the potential to bring about social change. The Foundation urges entrants to consider proposing projects that explore issues close to their home, for photographers are more likely to create a successful portfolio of work if they have ease of access to the location.

Applications will first be juried by the Alexia Board and its advisory council, who will then forward the top tier submissions onto a three-member panel for the final round of judging. The Grant prizes will go to those who concisely propose significant projects and who demonstrate an ability to accomplish their goals by showing high caliber photographs. First place Undergraduate and Graduate winners will each receive a semester’s tuition at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and a $1,000 cash endowment.

Deadline: 14 February. For further information, go to

Head On Photo Awards 2017

© Megan Lewis (2016 Portrait Prize finalist)

Head On Photo Festival is currently calling all photographers to submit their work to the Head On Photo Awards, a competition designed to promote both emerging and established photographers together across four categories: Portrait, Landscape, Mobile and Student. Judging is done anonymously to ensure “each work is selected solely on its merit rather than the celebrity of the photographer” say the Head On Foundation.

Alexander Strecker (Managing Editor, Lensculture), Isobel Parker Philip (Photography Curator, Art Gallery of NSW), Moshe Rosenzveig (Creative Director, Head On Photo Festival), Natan Dvir (Photographer and Teacher at ICP New York), Shoair Mavlian (Curator, TATE Modern), Simon Harsent (Photographer & POOL Collective Founder), and Maggie Steber (Photographer and Educator) are among the names that comprise the international jury this year.

The total prize pool is valued at $50,000 and includes $20,000 in cash. All finalists will have their work displayed in an exhibition at the Museum of Sydney (Portrait, Mobile, Student) or the NSW Parliament (Landscape), as part of the Head On Photo Festival this coming May.

The submission deadline is 26 February (members entry fee: Portrait/Landscape/Mobile: AUD$25, Student: AUD$1 / non-members: Portrait/Landscape/Mobile: AUD$30, Student: AUD$1). For more information, go to

Grand Prix Images Vevey

© Christian Patterson, from the series Gong Co (The Grand Prix Images Vevey winner 2015 / 2016)

The international photography competition Grand Prix Images Vevey aims to finance the production of an original photography project. The award comes with a CHF 40,000 (€37,000) monetary prize and is designed to give one artist the opportunity to develop, achieve, and present an extensive body of work to be premiered at the next of edition of Festival Images Vevey in September 2018.

The competition, say the organisers, “represents unique support for contemporary creation, with complete freedom of choice over subject and genre.” The final jury – to be announced soon – will be comprised of five leading personalities from the institutional, artistic, curatorial, media and editorial world.

Deadline: 26 February (fee: €60). For more information and details about the registration process, visit

Images Vevey Book Award

© Laia Abril, from the series Lobismuller (Images Vevey Book Award 2015 / 2016 winner)

The Images Vevey Book Award offers a CHF 10,000 (€ 9,000) prize to support the creation of a new book “that showcases an optimal and original balance between publication format and photographic content.” The competition grants this financial contribution to encourage artists to move beyond traditional photobook making practices, and help them develop a sophisticated design that complements their project.

Images Vevey is looking for applicants to show creativity and innovation, both in how they explore their chosen concept and in how they compose the book. The competition is open to all artists and professional and student photographers, and will be juried by five international personalities from the institutional, artistic, curatorial, media and editorial world.

The deadline to apply is 26 February. Go to to submit your proposal.

IWMF - Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists

© Katie Orlinsky (2015 IWMF Grantee)

The Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists advocates and promotes the work of female reporters and helps them pursue projects that will turn them into news industry leaders. Over the next nine years, the IWMF will distribute an annual total of $230,000 worth of grants to support a wide range of innovative, original, and collaborative endeavours to strengthen the skills of women journalists worldwide.

The fund offers grantees the opportunity to: expose under-reported but critical global issues; undertake ambitious projects that challenge traditional media narratives; develop field-based expertise and strengthen careers; pursue critical skills training and leadership opportunities; and launch entrepreneurial news projects.

A voting committee comprised of distinguished IWMF Board Members, Courage in Journalism Awardees, former IWMF grantees, and senior practicing journalists will select the grantees.

The deadline for this round of funding is 7 March. Learn more at

Anja Niedringhaus Courage In Photojournalism Award

© Adriane Ohanesian (2016 Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award winner)

The IWMF Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award honours the life and work of Anja Niedringhaus, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who was killed whilst on assignment in Afghanistan in 2014. The award is designed to celebrate female photojournalists working with a commitment to bring into focus important stories from around the world through courageous and determined storytelling.

Candidates for the Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award must work full-time or part-time as journalists – journalism must be the candidate’s primary vocation. Both freelance journalists and those affiliated with media organisations are eligible. The 2017 awardee will be named at a ceremony held in Washington D.C., and will receive a cash prize of $20,000.

The application deadline is 1 March. Find out more here:

CENTER - The Project Development Grant

© Megan E. Doherty, from the series Back of the Yards (2016 CENTER Project Development Grant winner)

The CENTER Project Development Grant is an international competition open to photojournalists, fine art or documentary photographers looking for funding to continue working on projects that are currently in progress. Applicants “should be at a place in their work and career where they can benefit from the exposure, networks, and opportunities that CENTER offers”.

The awards package includes a $5,000 monetary endowment; a show in the city of Santa Fe, New Mexico; a special invitation to participate in the Art Photo Index; a publication on Lenscratch; and an online exhibition at The 2017 juror is Paul Moakley (Deputy Photo Editor at TIME Magazine). Deadline: 3 March (entry fee: $45 members / $55 non-members of CENTER). Apply at

CENTER - The Project Launch

© Elena Anosova, from the series Section (2016 CENTER Project Launch winner)

The Project Launch is granted to an outstanding photographer working on a fine art series or documentary project. The award includes a $5,000 monetary fund to help complete or disseminate the work, and further acts as a platform for exposure and professional development opportunities.

Mazie Harris (Assistant Curator, Department of Photographs, J. Paul Getty Museum), Christy Havranek (Photo Director, The Huffington Post), and Dewi Lewis (Publisher, Dewi Lewis Publishing) are the jury members this year, and they will be “looking for cohesive, compelling bodies of work that are ready for international recognition.”

Deadline: 3 March (entry fee: $45 members / $55 non-members of CENTER). Apply at

Celeste Network Visible White Photo Prize

© Cosimo Piccardi, from the series Two black holes between our skins (2016 winner)

Founded by Celeste Network and Fondazione Studio Marangoni in 2012, the Visible White Photo Prize aims to fund and support international photographers who are engaged with meaningful personal, social, and political issues of today. The theme this "talks about conflicts which are denied or kept silent, which relate to the family or to personal conflicts that can go beyond the personal sphere that are also questions of society, such as violence against women, societal unease, or the individual’s inner conflicts" says the prize curator Laura Serani.

A judging panel of Selva Barni (Fantom Editions); Andrés Duprat (Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires); Brigitte Lardinois (University of the Arts London); Elisa Medde (Foam Magazine); Moritz Neumüller (IDEP Barcelona); and Azu Nwagbogu (LagosPhoto) will select the winners. Together they will be looking for works that: deliver new angles of vision and understanding to the chosen theme; reflect contemporary ways in which images of people, ideas and places are created; and use conceptual or descriptive interpretations to shed new light on the chosen theme.

A total of €5,000 prizes will be awarded: €2,500 for the Best Project, €1,500 for the Runner-up Project, and €1,000 for the Best Single Photo. Deadline: 28 February (fee: €20 single photo, for additional single works €15, and €50 project (up to 10 single images), for additional projects €40). To apply, visit


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

13 minutes

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