KINSHASA, December 18 – Rossiya Segodnya Press Service – The global tour of photos by winners of the Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest (http://stenincontest.com) opened in the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. On Friday, the Free University of Kinshasa, with support from the Russian Embassy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, hosted the opening of the exhibition with photos by the best young photojournalists in the world – winners of the contest organized by the Rossiya Segodnya Media Group under the patronage of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO. The exhibition will run until December 24, and the show is free.
The exhibition in Kinshasa includes about 60 photos by young photojournalists from Russia, South Africa, Spain, Italy, France, Israel, Syria, Belarus, and Kyrgyzstan. The show not only presents the winning shots of 2020 but also photos from all six years of the contest since it started in December 2014.
The main topics of the exhibition include global humanitarian challenges, the environment and national identity as well as social problems. The exhibition photos are characterized by aesthetic beauty, almost like a painting. With their artistic vision, young photojournalists want to reveal today’s most serious problems and bring them into sharp focus. They believe beauty has great humanistic power that can help save the world.
In his opening remarks, Russia’s Ambassador to the Congo Alexei Sentebov said:
“An exhibition of such scale is being held for the first time in the history of diplomatic relations between Russia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is important in the year marking their 60th anniversary. Photography as a tool of modern media is the most objective way to help people in various parts of the world see the truth about current events. Photography is multiethnic and can speak to people regardless of borders. We are happy that the contest, which commemorates a Russian journalist, Rossiya Segodnya photojournalist Andrei Stenin, receives great new submissions every year. The participants’ works show that photography can improve the lives of people and help find solutions to society’s many problems. And we wanted people in Kinshasa to see as many of these photos as possible. This is why our display includes photos by winners from the contest’s past years.”
The ambassador also noted the Free University’s role in organizing the exhibition:
“The Free University of Kinshasa volunteered as a platform for the photo exhibition, which I believe is no coincidence. The young generation of Congolese is interested in Russia and students are actively trying to close the knowledge gap as regards Russia and reach an ‘information balance’.
”In her online remarks for the participants and guests of the opening ceremony, the contest’s curator and head of the Visual Projects Service of the Rossiya Segodnya United Photo Information Directorate Oksana Oleinik noted:
“Photojournalists from the African countries are among most active contestants and have won its categories many times. This year was no exception: the series “Ebola: Democratic Republic of the Congo” by South African photojournalist John Wessels won bronze in the Top News category and a special prize For Humanitarian Photography from the contest’s partner, the world’s leading humanitarian organization: the International Committee of the Red Cross.”
Oksana Oleinik also thanked the Russian Embassy in the Congo for helping to organize the exhibition:
“I know that together we have managed to support the young and budding talent in photojournalism today and bring our countries even closer.”
Joseph N’sa Yombe, Head of Cooperation at Free University of Kinshasa:
“We are happy to host the exhibition of the Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest winning photos. For the university’s administration, this exhibition, organized with support from the Russian Embassy in the Congo, serves as an example for southern universities on how to open up to the world and meet today’s challenges.”
The 2020 Andrei Stenin photo contest roadshow includes several countries: it will begin once COVID-19 quarantine restrictions are lifted. Until then, the winning photos from 2020 can be seen online in the virtual gallery (https://www.kunstmatrix.com/en/stenin-contest).
As per tradition, submission of entries for the 2021 contest begins on December 22, Andrei Stenin’s birthday. Applications can be filed in Russian (https://stenincontest.ru/), English (https://stenincontest.com/), and Chinese (https://cn.stenincontest.com/) on the contest’s website.
About the contest
The Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest, organized by Rossiya Segodnya under the patronage of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO, aims to support young photographers and draw public attention to the challenges of photojournalism today. It is a platform for young photographers – talented and sensitive individuals open to all things new – to highlight people and events near us.
2020 Stenin contest partners
General media partners: Vesti.Ru news website and the nationwide state Rossiya K TV Channel (Russia Culture). International media partners: Sputnik news agency and radio, Askanews news agency, Independent Media multi-platform company, Notimexnews agency, ANAnews agency, RTTV channel and website, Shanghai United Media Group (SUMG), China Daily website, The Paperwebsite, Al Mayadeenmedia network, Prensa Latinanews agency, News1 news agency, DBWwebsite and Brasil 247website. Industry media partners: National Geographic Russia magazine, Russian Photowebsite, Photo-study.ruwebsite, Photo Academy, YOung JOurnalistswebsite, Fotoargentamagazine, Delhi Photography Club, Enfoque Visualmagazine and LF Magazine, the All About Photo website. International exhibition partner: PhotOn. Festival