Earth Photo 2020 shortlist announced
Ashortlist of 50 of the best environmental photographs and four films that document the Earth in all its diversity have been selected for the Society’s Earth Photo 2020 competition. Developed in partnership with Forestry England, this year’s competition explores the themes of people, place, nature, changing forests and a new category for this year: a climate of change.
The 2020 shortlist is made up of varied artwork chosen to promote discussion and to help better connect us with the world by sharing stories about our planet, its inhabitants and our treatment of both. From plastic-polluted seas in Kuwait, habitat loss threatening seals in Antarctica and homeless children in Bangladesh to tea pickers in China, seaweed cultivators in Zanzibar and fishermen from Vietnam, the selected images and films capture a sense of our awe-inspiring and dynamic world at a time when human influence and activity are in sharp focus. The shortlist was selected by a distinguished panel with expertise in the fields of photography, film, journalism, geography and the environment. Chaired by Pulitzer Prizewinning photographer Marissa Roth, the panel included photographer Matthew Arnold; editor of Geographical magazine Katie Burton; photographer Tim Flach; lecturer and artist Vron Harris; Director of Photography at Geo magazine Magdalena Herrera; photographer Simon Norfolk; and Director of Education and Public Affairs at the Royal Photographic Society Michael Pritchard.
When asked about this year’s shortlist, Marissa said: ‘I was more than delighted to see that Earth Photo 2020 received a record-breaking number of entries this year. The quality of the submissions was consistently very, very good, which has been our benchmark since the inception of Earth Photo in 2018. ‘Seeing beauty is as important as advocating for awareness and change, and many of the photographs on this year’s Earth Photo shortlist reflect this duality. A number of the images are thought-provoking and emotionally heart-rending, as they clearly show the impact and effects of climate change, and also the consequences of human behaviour. Each one of the Earth Photo 2020 shortlisted photographs captures layers of nuance and information in a single image, which exemplifies visual storytelling at its best.’
She continued: ‘Our aim continues to be about supporting, and hopefully inspiring, the work of a range of photographers, from professionals to aspiring amateurs, as they explore our beautiful, fragile planet.’
The shortlisted images will be exhibited at the Society from 7 December 2020 to 26 February 2021, as well as at Forestry England sites between autumn 2020 and spring 2021, including Grizedale and Moors Valley. Winners will be presented with their prizes at an awards ceremony at the Society once socialdistancing restrictions have been lifted.
Visit of the shortlist.
to see a virtual exhibition
Second nature (3), Işık Kaya (2020)
Fingerprints of the Earth, Ruan Kezhuang (2019)