The winners have been announced!

BOY © Parisa Taghizadeh
 
 
We have a winner! We are thrilled to announce that Parisa Taghizadeh has won the Pride Photo Award 2014 with an image from her photo series BOY, in which she documents the theatrical world of her 5-year-old son and his love for things generally associated with girls. The winning image has been chosen by the jury for its power to show: “the joy in the child’s freedom of expression, regardless of gender conventions. The image conveys a playful happiness and self-confidence made possible by the love and affirmation of the mother, who is also the photographer. “Boy’s” mask becomes a universal positive thing, a chance to experience the fluidity of an as yet unfixed gender identification, touched by light and full of hope for the future.” Parisa Taghizadeh’s photo series was also awarded the 1st prize in the category Gender.
 
In an interview that we will publish soon, Parisa Taghizadeh told us: “My husband and I talked quite a bit about [showing the photo in the context of Pride Photo Award]. I had never thought of ‘Boy’ in the context of pride at all. I didn’t want to label or define my son. But we both decided it is organizations like Pride Photo Award that make a real difference to the lives of the LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer] community. I think it is important for us to teach our children the relevance of such organizations. Whether my son grows up gay or straight doesn’t matter. It felt like contributing to a good cause.”
 
Looking at this year’s entries, the jury said: “The entries reflected the unrest we have seen in the world, the increasing oppression and violence against the LGBTQ communities in some regions, such as Russia, Uganda – where the ‘Kill the Gays Bill’ was signed into law – and the corrective rapes in South Africa. Many photographers compassionately captured the struggles and the bravery of the LGBTQ communities in these regions, as well as in Southern Asia and the USA.
 
Some communities are still underrepresented in the entries. This year’s entries suggest there are new challenges that call for new strategies beyond the conventional ways in which the LGTQ communities have used visibility as both a means and an end. We are glad to see photographers looking to translate the urgency into images that have strong and silent depth, rather than going for noisy and spectacular images.
 
Let them show their faces © Aldo Soligno
 
The series ‘Let them show their faces’ by Aldo Soligno about the Ugandan activists is a good example of this, by using absence, the right to not be visible, as a comment on tabloids that outed Ugandan activists by publishing photos taken from Facebook profiles and calling for these people to be hanged. Restoring such anonymity to these endangered individuals comes at a highly dehumanizing cost: stripping the subjects of their uniqueness as individuals who are forced to hide, even as members of other LGBT communities grow more confident than ever in the relative safety of non-heteronormative visibility. Indeed, the jury was struck by the fact that so many submissions communicated such positive stories. This is surely the case with the winning photograph from Parisa Taghizadeh’s quiet and eloquently uplifting series, BOY.”
 
For the full list of winners and winning images, please check the Winners 2014 page of our website.

Pride Photo Award is an annual international contest for photos about sexual and gender diversity.

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