Lucie photo awards presented in New York

Updated: 2014-11-03 13:33

By Zhang Yuwei and Niu Yue in New York(China Daily USA)

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 Lucie photo awards presented in New York

Hossein Farmani, Lucie Awards founder and chairman, stands in front of photos from Chinese photographers during the Annual Best of Show Exhibition for the 2014 International Photography Awards in New York on Nov 1. Lu Huiquan / For China Daily

The 12th Lucie Awards held in New York on Sunday saw an increasing number of China-related elements in the works submitted by photographers - including three Chinese finalists - from 104 countries.

Hossein Farmani, the founder and chairman of the Lucie Awards, said different aspects of China and Chinese culture have become a theme for both Chinese and Western photographers who presented in their works for this year's awards.

"We love the fact that you can see China by Chinese and China through a Western vision," said Farmani, adding that the Chinese photos have brought viewers - especially Western viewers - closer to "a mysterious" part of the world.

The Lucie Awards is an annual event honoring the best achievements in international photography. Taken from the Latin word "lux" for "light", Lucie is a tribute to the influence that light plays in photography. In this year's Lucie exhibition, which shows works from the 30 finalists, photos about China ranged from a street vendor night scene in Beijing to a traditional Chinese wedding shot by both Chinese and non-Chinese photographers.

A Netherlands-based photographer shot a photo of a folk performance during a Chinese She-Huo festival, which honors the gods of the earth during the Chinese Lunar New Year.

Modern Chinese themes were also on display at the Lucies. Wang Jing, a photographer for China Daily, shot a photo of wasted magazines in one of the "trash villages" in suburban Beijing after spending several days there learning about recycling.

"What I learned about was not just the recycling process but more importantly the significant hardship the villagers go through," said Wang, who was nominated under the category of Deeper Perspective Photographer of the Year.

Farmani, who lives in Bangkok, said the Chinese and Western photographers show a different China through their lenses.

"That's the beauty of it and it is interesting to see Chinese and non-Chinese photographers showing China through two different visions," said Farmani.

"The Chinese photographers are bringing their daily life to us, which is for us very fascinating," said Farmani.

Tim Barker, a photographer and filmmaker, who viewed the Lucie Awards exhibition on Saturday, said that many Westerners are unfamiliar with China and Asia as a whole, making Asia a destination for photographers to explore and make discoveries.

"China is interesting every way it looks," said Barker.

"Western photographers are interested in discoveries," said Betina Garcia, a photojournalist student from Denmark who was at the exhibit, adding the color used in some photos shot by Chinese photographers was unique and showed sharp contrast among visual elements.

This year's Lucie Awards selected 30 finalists from more than 27,000 submissions from 104 countries.

Of the 30 finalists, four winners - Sandro of the US, Vyacheslav Mishchenko of Ukraine, K.M. Asad of Bangladesh and Yannick Wegner of Germany - won the categories of International Photographer of the Year, Discovery of the Year, Deeper Perspective Photographer of the Year and Moving Image Photographer of the Year.

The Lucie Awards, in partnership with the International Photography Awards (IPA), for the first time had an IPA China exhibition for the Chinese photographers given the growing interest of China. The IPA exhibition, which presented works of several hundred Chinese photographers, attracted more than 900,000 viewers this year.

Farmani said his next project is to bring this year's Lucie Awards exhibition to Shanghai early next year.

"We are also planning to set up a Lucie Awards pavilion in Beijing," said Farmani.

Lu Huiquan in New York contributed to the story.