The World Press Photo Exhibition is currently on display at the Canadian War Museum, showcasing more than 140 award-winning images from the best of international photojournalism.
“What I like about it is the variety of stories,” explains Josée Gervais, a program interpreter and guide at the museum who says she looks forward to the exhibit each year.
“What’s interesting about the World Press is the way that these photos capture a human side to each story, [whether] tragedies, sports, athletes who have cancer but continue anyway. Some photos show people who are living in extreme environments. There are also photos from major events that I haven’t heard about. The exhibition is diverse and powerful. There it is, in your face.”
Gervais points out how the exhibition offers visitors an opportunity to see, up close, stories from around the world that people may have missed in the media. Examples include images of women playing American football; people who identify as LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; daily exercise in China that was captured by a camera mounted on a flying drone; wildlife photography and more.
“It’s a turn-key exhibition…that’s out of the box and onto the floor,” explains Avra Gibbs Lamey, the museum’s senior communications and media relations officer.
“The exhibition essentially arrives in crates and one representative [from World Press] travels with it, sets it up, and answers questions.”
She acknowledges that no Canadians won the contest this year but that Paul Nicklen, a resident of Vancouver Island, has won previously; notably first prize in the Nature Stories category in 2012 for his images of Emperor Penguins taken for National Geographic magazine.
“These [images] really are the best of the best,” says Lamey, who adds that she walks through the exhibition more than once while it’s on display each year.
“On different days, different [photographs] strike me. It makes you aware of how much is going on.”
Here’s a sneak peek at a small selection of the incredible images on display. Please visit World Press Photo for an overview of all winning images.
John Stanmeyer, USA, VII for National Geographic
26 February 2013, Djibouti City, Djibouti
African migrants on the shore of Djibouti city at night, raising their phones in an attempt to capture an inexpensive signal from neighboring Somalia—a tenuous link to relatives abroad. Djibouti is a common stop-off point for migrants in transit from such countries as Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea, seeking a better life in Europe and the Middle East.
Markus Schreiber, Germany, The Associated Press
13 December 2013, Pretoria, South Africa.
A woman reacts in disappointment after access to see former South Africa President Nelson Mandela was closed on the third and final day of his casket lying in state, outside Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa.
Brent Stirton, South Africa, Reportage by Getty Images
25 September 2013, West Bengal India.
A group of blind albino boys photographed in their boarding room at the Vivekananda mission school for the blind in West Bengal, India. This is one of the very few schools for the blind in India today.
Visitor’s advisory: This installation contains graphic material and subject matter that some visitors may find disturbing. It is strongly recommended that adults accompany and supervise children while visiting this installation.
2014 World Press Photo runs at the War Museum (1 Vimy Place) until August 21, 2014. Check their website for hours and admission fees.