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Prix Pictet Exhibition - Consumption

Since its creation in 2008 the Prix Pictet has become an internationally acclaimed platform for photographers whose work focuses on one of the most critical issues of our age: global sustainability. The prize makes no distinction between the various forms of photography. It is rather a celebration of outstanding image making combined with great narrative skill. The Prix Pictet is now widely recognised as one of the world’s leading photography prizes.

For the fifth Prix Pictet the theme of the award was Consumption. We are all consumers. We have invented new forms of building, industrial production, farming and energy, we have emptied the seas and ravaged the land in our relentless drive to satisfy our unquenchable desires. We have sustained this through the sometimes thoughtless exploitation of the world’s poorest people.

275 nominators from 66 countries and six continents put forward over 700 photographers worldwide for the award. Commenting on their responses, former Secretary General of the United Nations Kofi Annan writes;
‘In their various responses to the theme of Consumption, each artist has addressed the environmental and social challenges we face in their own personal way. Their focus has been as wide as the theme itself. They have submitted a remarkable range of works that present us with the many and paradoxical faces of consumption. Together they tell a tale that is by turns harrowing and hopeful. Once again the Prix Pictet has brought together a collection of images that are an eloquent visual reminder, if one were needed, of the range and scale of the earthly threat from all facets of consumption.

These are images that ought to persuade governments, businesses – and all of us as individuals – of the need for a fundamental rethink of the principles on which present-day affluence is founded. The issue of needless consumption and in particular food security is not simply at the forefront of the global political stage, it is now ¬firmly on the personal agenda of each and every one of us.’
Michael Schmidt was awarded the fifth Prix Pictet for Lebensmittel, his monumental exploration of the food industry. Sadly Michael Schmidt passed away three days after the award a following a long illness.

An exhibition not to miss.

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