Winner of the 2011 Award

‘Leon’ by Trea van Drunen


The photo shows the 12-year-old transgender boy Leon. Her fascination for transformation brought photographer Trea van Drunen into contact with Leon, who has been diagnosed as transgender (gender dysphoric). She will follow Leon’s physical and mental development with her camera for the next ten years to tell his story. The photo was taken earlier this year and also won first prize in the category Gender.


The jury said of the winning picture: “It is a strong, iconic image that challenges the viewer both with the strength of Leon’s expression and the astonishing story of his young life as a transgendered person. There is a sense of mystery to this picture, making people reflect on life and identity… Leon shows a very confident face to the camera and the world, which is quite surprising for somebody so young. As you look at it you notice something sweet and giving in his expression. We felt unanimously from the start that this could be the winning picture.”


“This is a good start”, says Trea van Drunen when she heard about her victory. “Leon and I hit off right away and the trust we share is reflected in the picture. Transgender people should be seen and need a platform such as Pride Photo Award. I am therefore very pleased with the comments of the international jury.” Van Drunen graduated from the Photo Academy Amsterdam this year and is nominated for the Photo Academy Award 2011.


You can find a full list of the winners of the 2011 edition here or you can view the virtual exhibition of the winning photos.

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


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