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*Update* Sony World Photography Awards 2021: Switzerland National Award

Communiqué de presse   •   fév 09, 2021 01:00 CET

Following the 2021 National & Regional Award results the World Photography Organisation has disqualified Switzerland's recipient. You can read the full statement hereand also below:

„As per the rules of the Sony World Photography Awards, photo manipulation and post editing is allowed in cases where the image is not claiming to be factual and/or documentary. This includes instances in which multiple images are used in composite to create a single image. All images entered into the competitions are checked and ratified with the photographers who in turn provide the warranties that their entry abides by the competition’s rules; including, but not limited to, copyright ownership which must extend to all images used in a composite.

Following the announcement of this year’s National Award winners, concerns were raised regarding the provenance of the photographs used in Raphael Barbar’s (Switzerland) composite image Geneva Under Thunder. A further examination of this issue with the photographer confirmed that the necessary copyright permissions for one of the images used in his composite was not complete.

As a result Raphael Barbar’s image has been disqualified as Switzerland’s National Award winner and a new winner will be announced in the coming days.“

The World Photography Organisation and Sony Switzerland are delighted to reveal Rapael Barbar as Switzerland’s National Award winner for the Sony World Photography Awards 2021.

Zurich, 9 February 2021. The National Awards program is an initiative set up by the World Photography Organisation and Sony to support local photographic communities around the world, with 53 countries taking part this year.

Over 330,000 images from 220 territories were submitted to the Sony World Photography Awards 2021 and over 165,000 were entered to the Open competition (from which the National Awards winner was selected).

Raphael Barbar was anonymously selected by judges for his photograph “Geneva under Thunder”, entered into the “Landscape” category of the Open competition. “I took this picture the 10th of August on the Salève near Geneva. I was coming back home from my workplace when I saw the thunder and decided to go out to take pictures.”

As Switzerland’s National Award winner, Raphael Barbar receives Sony digital imaging Equipment.

The overall winners in the Student, Youth, Open and Professional competition of the Sony World Photography Awards 2021 will be announced on the 15 April 2021 via the World Photography Organisation’s digital and video platforms. For more information about the winners and shortlists please visit


Note for editors:

For further information about the Sony World Photography Awards, please contact:

Inbal Mizrahi / +44 (0) 7393 023508   

About Sony World Photography Awards

Produced by the World Photography Organisation, the internationally acclaimed Sony World Photography Awards is one of the most important fixtures in the global photographic calendar. Now in its 14th year, the free-to-enter Awards are a global voice for photography and provide a vital insight into contemporary photography today. For both established and emerging artists, the Awards offer world-class opportunities for exposure of their work. The Awards additionally recognise the world’s most influential artists working in the medium through the Outstanding Contribution to Photography Awards; previous recipients include Martin Parr, William Eggleston, Mary Ellen Mark, Candida Hofer and Nadav Kander.

Sony World Photography Awards Competitions

The Sony World Photography Awards 2021 competitions include:

  • Professional competition - Judged anonymously on a body of work. 10 categories to enter, including a newly introduced ‘Environment’ category.
  • Open competition - Judged anonymously on a single image. 10 categories to enter.
  • Youth competition - Judged anonymously on a single image responding to monthly themes, for photographers aged 12-19.
  • Student competition - For academic institutions, a body of work responding to one brief on the theme of ‘Invisible Lines’. Shortlisted photographers then submit a series of images responding to a second brief.
  • National Awards - All images entered into the Open competition are automatically considered for the National & Regional Awards programme which celebrates local photographic talent in more than 50 countries and is judged anonymously upon a single image.

About World Photography Organisation

The World Photography Organisation is a global platform for photography initiatives. Working across up to 180 countries, our aim is to raise the level of conversation around photography by celebrating the best imagery and photographers on the planet. We pride ourselves on building lasting relationships with both individual photographers as well as our industry-leading partners around the world. The World Photography Organisation hosts a year-round portfolio of events including the Sony World Photography Awards, one of the world’s leading photography competitions, and PHOTOFAIRS, leading international art fairs dedicated to photography. For more details see Follow the World Photography Organisation on Instagram (@worldphotoorg), Twitter (@WorldPhotoOrg) and LinkedIn/Facebook (World Photography Organisation). Our hashtags to follow are #sonyworldphotographyawards #swpa

À propos de Sony Corporation

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