The All Roads Photography Program will be exhibiting its 2010 photography awardees at Chobi Mela VI, an international festival of photography. Chobi Mela VI opens January 21, 2011 in Bangladesh. This year’s theme is “Dreams” and is considered the largest exhibition of photography in Asia. The festival is considered to have the most diverse participation of photography in the world. Now having gained an international reputation as one of the leading photography festivals in the world it features 63 exhibitions from 33 participating countries that span all seven continents of the globe. Chobi Mela is unique in having been developed and launched in South Asia.
Shahidul Alam, Chobi Mela festival director and All Roads photography advisory board member, explains the festival’s theme, “As dream merchants, we [photographers] create images that confront us with horrific facts, and allure us with magical metaphors. We seek a society where love songs are cherished and curiosity celebrated. We conjure up a mystical world, through light and shape and dancing pixels. We toy with perceptions and juggle facts. We trade in the currency of dreams, and flirt with an elusive reality. So to turn to dreams after [past themes] ‘Differences’, ‘Exclusion’, ‘Resistance’, ‘Boundaries’ and ‘Freedom’ is perhaps to return to what holds us together in the face of all our obstacles, the foci of all our longings. To realize our dreams is perhaps the ultimate paradise. So we invite dreamers and wanderers and the soulful troubadour, to ignite our imagination. To provoke and goad us out . . . to dream.”
The 2010 Photography Program Awardees Are:
Rashid Talukder (Bangladesh)
Pioneer Photographer Award
Photo essay “The 1971 Liberation War”
Tomás Munita (Chile)
Mid-career Photographer Award
Photo essay “Lost Harvest—The Death of Loa River”
Sumit Dayal (Kashmir)
Emerging Photographer Award
Photo essay “On Going Home”
The Photography Program recognizes and supports talented international storytellers whose still photography documents their changing cultures and communities. Each year four photographers are awarded a financial prize, and their photo essays are exhibited at the All Roads Film Festival and other venues. They also receive photographic accessories and, through workshops, get valuable training to assist in their fieldwork.
Candidates are nominated by an advisory board of leaders from the photography industry and representatives from National Geographic Society.
- Award recipients must be from an indigenous or minority culture within their countries of origin.
- Award recipients’ work must document their changing cultures and community and represent a recent body of work (within the last two years).
- Potential recipients must be living in the countries that they are documenting.
- Awards are based on artistic merit in combination with the photojournalistic focus of the project.