Pushing the limits of creativity
Launched in 2016 by the World Photography Organisation and ZEISS, the ZEISS Photography Award rewards the world’s most distinctive image-makers creating outstanding series showing their individual way of seeing the world.
Photographers are challenged to submit bodies of work responding to a particular theme. The 2020 brief is "Seeing Beyond – Discoveries" and the submissions will be judged by three experts in the photography industry. The ZEISS Photography Award seeks out to celebrate those photographers pushing the creative boundaries of the medium while demonstrating a strong visual narrative.
15 October 2019 until 4 February 2020
For the 2020 ZEISS Photography Award photographers are asked to respond to the theme "Seeing Beyond – Discoveries".
Throughout time the human race has been driven to make discoveries. This might be a personal revelation, a scientific and technological breakthrough or an idea that has led to social change - a new way of thinking that’s revolutionised our everyday lives. Since photography’s inception, many great individuals have seen the camera as a tool to explore and question the world, and used the power of the image to shed light on something new.
Epiphanies, inventions and transformations from the known to the unknown, we want to see something new. Submissions exploring the landscape, humans, science, political or economic changes, or even something more conceptual, are all welcome.
While all creative responses are encouraged, submissions must actively explore the topic of the brief. The series should be between five to ten images, have a clear narrative that aligns with the brief (Seeing Beyond – Discoveries) and visual consistency.
Entrants can submit all different types of photography – be that in technique or subject matter. All submissions must be accompanied by a supporting statement which outlines the story behind the work.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: 13:00 (GMT), February 4, 2020
You wish to submit your photos?
Winner of the ZEISS Photography Award receives:
- A range of ZEISS camera lenses of their choice worth a total of €12,000
- €3,000 to cover travel costs for a photo project
- Flights and accommodation to attend the Sony World Photography Awards night and the exhibition opening in London in April 2020
- ZEISS will also invite the winner to their headquarters in Germany to enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of the factory and the chance to test out a variety of ZEISS lenses
- The winner will also have the chance to collaborate directly with ZEISS and the World Photography Organisation for future projects
A selection of shortlisted series will also be on show at London’s Somerset House during the Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition. Dates of exhibition to be announced early 2020.
- 15 October 2019, 11am CET: Competition open for submission
- 4 February 2020, 2pm CET: Competition closed for submissions
- 31 March 2020: Shortlist published and Winner announced
- 16 April 2020: Award ceremony and gala dinner London
- 17 April to 4 May 2020: The winning photo series and selected photos from the shortlist exhibited at Somerset House in London
"I'm incredibly grateful for the ZEISS Photography Award because it provided me an opportunity to share the stories of my subjects with a global audience. Thanks to the award, my project was picked up by international outlets, and it really allowed me to share the photos with the world. I couldn't ask for anything more, particularly because my project features people who are often overlooked."Rory Doyle, winner of the 2019 ZEISS Photography Award
"After winning the ZEISS Photography Award, I got a lot of requests from international magazines, also the big magazines. There was a lot of international attention, all of a sudden. This award really stimulates you to do what you do, to continue working."Nick Hannes, Winner ZEISS Photography Award 2018
"Due to photo editors having seen my work through the news of winning the ZEISS Photography Award, my personal documentary work has since gone on to be printed in magazines and newspaper around the world. Winning the award helped secure more clients but, more importantly, my self-confidence as a photographer has certainly grown since the win."Kevin Faingnaert, Winner ZEISS Photography Award 2017
"The ZEISS Photography Award was a great opportunity for me because it opened up windows to exposure of my own work where I alone would have never gotten by myself."Tamina-Florentine Zuch, Winner ZEISS Photography Award 2016