World Press Photo Exhibition

Scruffy students and tuxed-up celebrities alike rubbed shoulders at last week’s opening of the World Press Photo 2010 exhibition in Santiago.

Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica
Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica

The World Press Photo exhibition is an annual event providing fascinating eyewitness records of global events from the previous year. Following the World Press Photo Contest, the winning images go on global tour in April, reaching approximately 100 cities in 45 countries and visited by over two million people. The tour then finishes in March of the following year. The exhibition is currently being shown here in Santiago, and is well worth a visit.

Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica
Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica

The photos were varied and intriguing: from strange Woodstock-like festival settings where ugly hippies dance naked in mud, to aerial stadium photography, breakneck sports snaps and powerful images of war and conflict.

“The exhibition is a showcase for creativity in photojournalism and a platform for developments in the profession--part of World Press Photo's aim of encouraging and stimulating the work of press photographers around the world,” say the organizers.

The winner of this year’s high profile World Press Photo contest is Pietro Masturzo from Italy, with a picture depicting women shouting in protest from a rooftop in Tehran on 24 June 2009. One of the independent jury members said of the photo: "It shows the beginning of something, the beginning of a huge story. It adds perspectives to news. It touches you both visually and emotionally, and my heart went out to it immediately."

Though Maturzo may have won the coveted World Press Photo of The Year 2010 award, all the photos in the exhibition are either compelling or entertaining and some are even jaw dropping-

Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica
Photo courtesy Fundación Telefónica

such as the fallen jockey looking up in horror as fifteen massive horses

descend upon him (amazingly, jockey and horse walked away unscathed).

Drinks and snacks were served in the outer room and spectators surged to see the images; the local paparazzi snapped away creating a solid opening night buzz. Yet it might be wiser to visit on a quiet afternoon- without the multitudes, pisco sours and fizz- for maximum image contemplation. What’s more, entrance to the exhibition is free.

World Press Photo: Santiago
Until August 15, 2010
Daily 9 am to 6 pm
Free Admission
Sala de Arte Fundacion Telefonica
Av. Providencia 111
Phone: 2-6912873
http://www.worldpressphoto.org

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