The winning images from the ZEISS Photography Awards capture life around the world

The winning images have been unveiled in the 2018 ZEISS Photography Awards, with Belgian photographer Nick Hannes scooping the top prize in a competition that included 90,000 submissions from over 140 countries around the world.

Floating Villa, Dubai 2017. A butler is welcoming the press to a prototype of The Floating Seahorse, an underwater holiday villa. The villa features underwater bedrooms and bathrooms with floor-to-ceiling windows that allow for views of marine life. By the time the project is complete, there will be more than 125 floating villas, which cost as much as 2,5 million Euro each. Image © Nick Hannes, Belgium, Winner, ZEISS Photography Award

The winning series is entitled Garden Of Delight, and was captured from 2016 to 2017 over the course of five trips to Dubai. The collection of images examines leisure and consumerism in the country, and was chosen as the overall winner under the theme of “Seeing Beyond – Untold Stories”. Each photograph was meticulously planned, with locations ranging from a prototype underwater holiday villa to a sub-zero bar in a Dubai shopping mall. In the work, the photographer explores ideas around globalization and capitalism, and was praised by the panel of judges for the unique character and narrative displayed throughout the photographs.

Chill-out Ice Lounge, Dubai 2016. Saudi tourists are having a hot chocolate at the Chillout Ice Lounge, a subzero bar with ice sculptures, situated at Oasis shopping mall in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on January 6, 2016. Image © Nick Hannes, Belgium, Winner, ZEISS Photography Award

“The winning series stood out because each image captures a real moment and tells a story of its own. And yet they knit together so well to give an overall sense of what life might be like for locals in the metropolis that is Dubai,” said Jury member Chris Hudson, Art Director, National Geographic Traveller (UK). Talking about his success, Nick Hannes said, “I am very honoured and grateful to receive this award. ‘Garden of Delight’ is a self-initiated and self-funded project. I am glad I persevered. This recognition proves that it was worth to keep going and dig deep into my subject.”

Circus love, Les Pêcheurs de Rêves. This is the second chapter of a long term project on itinerant contemporary Circus. Every chapter tells the story of a different family. Les Pêcheurs de Rêves is a small french Circus, where Florence and Vincent play the role of the clowns Za and Krapotte, making a parody of their own life and marriage. Krapotte, like Florence, is the strong one in the couple, while Za would make anything to please her and conquer her. Real life mixes with fiction and their belief is so strong that they married under the 'clownesque regime', a name they invented to demonstrate their faith in the characters they interpret. The Circus so outdated, yet so perfect, like a symbol of a world without frontiers, globalized, multiethnic, a wheel, which spins and squeaks, relentlessly and without a pause. The Circus with its delight and its despair is a metaphor for life. The Lives of the Artists are filled with love, victory and triumph, defeat and humiliation; nomadic lives which follow diagonal or circular routes, like the cycles of seasons.
Circus love, Les Pêcheurs de Rêves. This is the second chapter of a long-term project on itinerant contemporary Circus. Every chapter tells the story of a different family. Les Pêcheurs de Rêves is a small french Circus, where Florence and Vincent play the role of the clowns Za and Krapotte, making a parody of their own life and marriage. Image © Stephanie Gengotti, Italy, Shortlist, ZEISS Photography Award

As the winner of the ZEISS Photography Award, Hannes received €12,000 (US$14,676) worth of ZEISS lenses and €3000 (US$3669) to cover travel costs for another photography project. The 2018 ZEISS Photography Award judges also recognized nine further series of works by other photographers, and all of the work is due to be exhibited at Somerset House London as part of the 2018 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition from 20 April to 6 May, 2018.

Vijayan 31. Vijayan is an aspiring body builder from Tamil Nadu. He wanted a portrait to show his pride for his country and his masculinity.
Vijayan 31. Vijayan is an aspiring body builder from Tamil Nadu. He wanted a portrait to show his pride for his country and his masculinity. Image © Mark Leaver, United Kingdom, Shortlist, ZEISS Photography Award

Now in its third year, the ZEISS Photography Award is a collaboration between the World Photography Organisation (creators of the Sony World Photography Awards and PHOTOFAIRS ) and ZEISS. The award challenges photographers worldwide to submit a body of work addressing a selected theme.

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The winning images from the ZEISS Photography Awards capture life around the world
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