Exhibition 2012

Prize Winners

The prize winners for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014, and the winner of the John Kobal New Work Award, were announced at an award ceremony on 11 November 2014 at the National Portrait Gallery.

Read the press release here

The £12,000 first prize was awarded to David Titlow for Konrad Lars Hastings Titlow

David Titlow (b. 1963) is a London-based photographer working in fashion and advertising. He has exhibited widely and has been commissioned by numerous magazines and newspapers, including The Guardian, The Sunday Telegraph, Vice and Vanity Fair. Originally a musician from Halesworth in Suffolk, Titlow switched to photography in the early nineties and has since worked in the industry. His portrait Konrad Lars Hastings Titlow was captured the morning after a large midsummer party in Rataryd, Sweden. It shows his baby son being introduced to a dog. He says: ‘everyone was a bit hazy from the previous day′s excess – my girlfriend passed our son to the subdued revellers on the sofa – the composition and back light was so perfect that I had to capture the moment’.

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Read a Q&A with David here

The £3,000 second prize was awarded toJessica Fulford-Dobson for Skate Girl

Jessica Fulford-Dobson (b. 1969) has worked as a freelance photographer since 2000. Her photographs have been widely exhibited throughout Europe and have been published in The Telegraph Magazine, Vogue and the Evening Standard. The shortlisted photograph Skate Girl is from the series The Skate Girls of Kabul, which documents young Afghan girls who attend the unique NGO Skateistan. Born out of a small skateboarding school that originated around an old, disused fountain in Kabul in 2007, Skateistan now provides education for children, teaching leadership and cultural awareness. She says of the photographs: ‘With the Skate Girls of Kabul portraits, I wanted to show these young Afghan girls with their skateboards within the liberating environment that Skateistan provides for them. It is here that for a few hours a week they are able to have some semblance of a childhood in a place that is detached from the war and their working life on the streets. Like so many other girls across the world, when given the chance to do something positive that they love, each starts to discover their own identity and strength, their own distinctive style and personality.’

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The £2,000 third prize was awarded to Birgit Püve for Braian and Ryan

Birgit Püve (b. 1978) lives and works in Tallinn, Estonia. She has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions and has been commissioned by publications such as The Sunday Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Der Spiegel and Ryanair Magazine. Her photograph Braian and Ryan is from the series Double Matters. Püve was working on the series for a photography book on twins and triplets living in Estonia. Püve visited the nine-year-old twin boys at their great grandmother′s house in Saue, an area of idyllic countryside outside Tallinn, where she spent a few hours photographing them in different locations in the surrounding land.

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The £1,000 fourth prize was awarded to Blerim Racaj for Indecisive Moment

Blerim Racaj (b. 1964) is a London-based freelance photographer. Racaj grew up in Kosovo and studied Economics before moving to London in 1995. Following the completion of a BTEC course in Photography at City of Westminster College in 2004, early photographs from Racaj′s ongoing project, entitled Kosovars, were published in the British Journal of Photography in 2006. Photographs from the project have since been exhibited in Italy, Kosovo, Croatia and the UK. His shortlisted photograph Indecisive Moment is from a recent and unpublished series about young Kosovars - a project triggered by the socio-political landscape in Kosovo and high level of unemployment amongst an increasingly young population. The photograph was taken at the base of the National Library, a place chosen by the sitters as an ’escape zone‘. Racaj says: ‘The photograph signifies that moment in time infused with uncertainty and vulnerability whilst knocking on the door of adulthood.’

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The competition was judged on an equal and anonymous basis from original prints by:

This year′s judging panel was:

Sandy Nairne, Director, National Portrait Gallery (Chair)
Robin Muir
, Writer, Curator and Contributing Editor to Vogue
Philip Prodger
, Head of Photographs Collection, National Portrait Gallery
Niri Shan
, Partner and Business Group Director, Taylor Wessing LLP
Bettina von Zwehl
, Artist

The John Kobal New Work Award was awarded to Laura Pannack for Chayla in Shul

The portrait is of Chayla, a young woman whose father is a rabbi at the synagogue in the photograph. Laura Pannack′s series Purity focuses on the lives of Orthodox Jewish women living in Stamford Hill; a project that connects to Pannack′s cultural heritage. Pannack says: 'I positioned Chayla and directed her whilst importantly allowing her to relax, focus and engage. I wanted her to feel comfortable and empowered.′

Laura Pannack (b. 1985) studied at the University of Brighton where she gained a BA (Hons) in photography. Her work has been seen in the World Press Photo Awards (1st Place Portraits Singles 2010), was included in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2009 and has been widely published in newspapers and magazines.

All selected photographers under the age of 30 were eligible for the John Kobal New Work Award. The winning photographer receives a cash prize of £4,000 and a commission from the Gallery to photograph a sitter connected with the UK film industry. The Award was judged by Simon Crocker, Chairman of the John Kobal Foundation.

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Konrad Lars Hastings Titlow (detail)
by David Titlow, 2014 © David Titlow