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Maria Sturm wins the 2018 PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series You don't look Native to me © Maria Sturm, which won First Prize in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

The Germany-based photographer wins with the series You don't look Native to me, which shows young Native Americans from around Pembroke, North Carolina

“It’s a bit hard to find words for this – You don’t look Native to me won the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant,” says Maria Sturm. “I feel exponentially happy and glad to be sharing the list with other women photographers whose work I admire.

Sturm has won the prize in a strong year for the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant, with the 31 shortlisted photographers including Magnum Photos’ Diana Markosian, Sputnik Photos’ Karolina Gembara, and Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize-winner Alice Mann. But her long-term project You don’t look Native to me, which shows young Native Americans in Pembroke, North Carolina impressed the judges with its sensitive approach to its subjects.

“There is a saying that ‘a photographer doesn’t take the photo, it is given by the sitter’ and this is true in each of Maria Sturm’s frames, which are juxtaposed between moments and the trust that she has built with those that she has captured,” commented Aïda Muluneh, a photographer, filmmaker and curator, and one of the judges. “In essence, her project You don’t look native to me offers us a glimpse into a long-term project that portrays a community at the crossroads of the past and the future.”

Storm, who was born in Romania and grew up in Germany, wins £5000 in cash plus publication in YET Magazine, a projection at Photo Vogue Festival 2018, and exposure on the PHmuseum channels. Read more about You don’t look Native to me in BJP’s article: www.bjp-online.com/2018/12/maria-sturm-native/

“The nicest part of all is the support from fellow photographers and friends, I felt so warm reading through all the message they have sent me,” Sturm told BJP. “I was also very touched by what Aïda said in her statement about choosing the work – Aïda has curated the Addis Foto Fest, which includes You don’t look Native to me and is now on show (I wish I could be there).

“I’m really thankful to everybody who opened their doors and spend time with me [while shooting You don’t look Native to me], especially Jonathan and Emilee Jacobs, Kim Pevia, Kayla Oxendine, John Whittemore, Reggie and Mescal Brewer, Makael Turner, Emmanuel Jones, Nakoma Maiden, Tristin Clark, Kaya Littleturtle and Dr. Jay Hansford Vest. I wish I can see you again soon.”

From the series You don’t look Native to me © Maria Sturm, which won First Prize in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

Second prize went to Sinead Kennedy for the series To Set Fire to the Sea, which explores the Australian Government’s policy of mandatory and indefinite detention for asylum seekers. “Sinead’s work documents a subject that brings with it many harrowing human stories,” commented Karen McQuaid, senior curator at The Photographers’ Gallery, London, and another judge. “I was extremely impressed by her ability to approach this subject without the heavy weight of a prescribed visual language. She has in no way shied away from investigating these traumatic stories, but she has allowed herself freedom and breath to decide for herself how she pictures them.”

Turkish photographer Sabiha Limen was awarded third prize for KKK (Quran School For Girls), which shows the daily life of girls trying to memorise the Quran in Istanbul. Alessandra Sanguinetti, a Magnum Photos member and one of the judges commented: “Sabiha leads us into the life of rituals and quiet rebellion in a strictly religious girls’ boarding school with a classic and disarmingly poetic approach. She presents the girls with gentleness and empathy while managing to capture the tension between the girls childlike, awkward play and the intense adult rules, expectations and limitations that are upon them.”

The jury also awarded five honorable mentions in the main prize category – You Have Nothing To Worry About by Melissa Spitz; Seven Sisters by Karolina Gembara; Out-Of-The-Way by Elena Asanova; Abkhazia by Ksenia Kuleshova; and Santa Barbara by Diana Markosian.

From the series KKK Quran School for Girls © Sabiha Çimen, which won Third Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers’ Grant

The New Generation Prize, awarded to a photographer under 30 years old, was scooped by South African photographer Alice Mann, whose project Drummies shows the all-female teams of South African drum majorettes, whose members often come from marginalised communities. Mann wins mentoring from Magnum Photos Global Business Development Director, Fiona Rogers, an automatic nomination to World Press Photo’s 2019 Joop Swart Masterclass, and £2000 in cash.

“To see Alice’s project for the first time is to step inside a world within a world” says Pamela Chen, creative lead at Instagram and one of the judges. “The work is at once visually delightful, and the judges peeled back deeper layers of the thoughtful and nuanced storytelling within. A knowing glance over the shoulder. A casual pose in the hallway. The girls themselves are active participants in their own story.

“Too often, an investigation of a subculture can veer towards the voyeuristic and sensational. But here in Drummies you see a collaboration between subject and photographer: in itself an act of the very pride and self-confidence that the project seeks to reveal.”

Three Honourable Mentions were also awarded in the New Generation Prize – Like A Bird by Johanna Maria Fritz; Journey To Impurity by Maria Contreras Coll; and Underland by Tamara Merino Bloch.

From the series Psyche © Ayline Olukman, which won the Verzasca Foto Prize

The PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant also included four other prizes – three prizes awarded by Vogue Italia’s photography team plus the Verzasca Foto Prize, in which the festival’s female team selected one project for a solo show at the 2019 edition. Vogue Italia’s Alessia Glaviano picked out Deep Land by Roselena Ramistella, Chiara Bardelli Nonino selected Äimärautio by Kati Leinonen, and Francesca Marani chose Hiding from Baba Yaga by Nanna Heitmann. The Verzasca Foto Prize went to French photographer Ayline Olukman for her project Psyche.

“Through a personal and sensitive vision of the female universe, Psyche transports us into a dreamlike universe, narrating the caducity of human life and its relationship with its surroundings: in its similarity and in its diversity,” stated the Verzasca team. “The story is built with an incisive delicacy and with the lyricism of soft colours, which crystallises in an almost fairy-tale atmosphere.”

https://phmuseum.com/grant See work by all 31 photographers shortlisted in the 2018 PHmuseum Women Photographers’ Grant here: www.bjp-online.com/2018/11/31-women-to-watch-out-for/

From the series You don’t look Native to me © Maria Sturm, which won First Prize in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series You don’t look Native to me © Maria Sturm, which won First Prize in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series You don’t look Native to me © Maria Sturm, which won First Prize in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series To Set Fire to the Sea © Sinead Kennedy, which won Second Prize in the PHmuseum’s Women Photographers Grant

From the series To Set Fire to the Sea © Sinead Kennedy, which won Second Prize in the PHmuseum’s Women Photographers Grant

From the series To Set Fire to the Sea © Sinead Kennedy, which won Second Prize in the PHmuseum’s Women Photographers Grant

From the series KKK Quran School for Girls © Sabiha Çimen, which won Third Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers’ Grant

From the series KKK Quran School for Girls © Sabiha Çimen, which won Third Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers’ Grant

From the series Abkhazia © Ksenia Kuleshova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Abkhazia, Eshera, 07/07/2017. Potatoes are stored on a floor in order for them to stay dry. From the series Abkhazia © Ksenia Kuleshova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Abkhazia, Pskhu, 05/09/2015. From the series Abkhazia © Ksenia Kuleshova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Abkhazia, Duripsch village, 09/05/2016. Etluhov Islam (38) is celebrating his victory in the horse racing. Important horse racing and national sports such as horse-football take place twice a year in Abkhazia: on May 9th (also known as a Victory Day in the USSR that celebrates the end of the WWII) and September 30th (Georgian-Abkhazian war ). From the series Abkhazia © Ksenia Kuleshova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

From the series You Have Nothing to Worry About © Melissa Spitz, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Xanax from Mom, 2013. From the series You Have Nothing to Worry About © Melissa Spitz, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

From the series You Have Nothing to Worry About © Melissa Spitz, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Children run around with sweets inside the house during New Year holiday season. Lip of the moose is a traditional New Year meal and delicacy. Defrosting meat straight on the table is very typical here. Katangsky District, Irkutsky region. Russia, 2015. From the series Out of the Way © Elena Anosova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

This is Nikita, he is 14 years old. He sorts nets after fishing in a break between preparation for final examinations at school. Katangsky District, Irkutsky region. Russia, 2017. From the series Out of the Way © Elena Anosova which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

Five-year-old Irishka pose on the old “parka’ or hunting coat. As with many families in the village, she is a mixture of cultures and ethnicities: her mother is Tungus, and her father is Russian. Katangsky District, Irkutsky region. Russia, 2017. From the series Out of the Way © Elena Anosova, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series Seven Sisters © Karolina Gemara, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series Seven Sisters © Karolina Gemara, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series Santa Barbara © Diana Markosian, which won an Honourable Mention in the PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant

From the series Drummies © Alice Mann, which won the New Generation Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

Many of the the Fairmont High Majorettes come from more privileged families then some of the other schools. Combined with their commitment, the parental suppoert and extra funding has enabled them to become one of the best competiting high schools in the province. From the series Drummies © Alice Mann, which won the New Generation Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

The school has one sports court, which is used by all the sports teams. The drummies have to be supervised when using this court, there are active gangs present around the periphery of the schools property. From the series Drummies © Alice Mann, which won the New Generation Prize in the PHmusem Women Photographers Grant

From the series Journey to Impurity © Maria Contreras Coll, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

From the series Journey to Impurity © Maria Contreras Coll, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

From the series Journey to Impurity © Maria Contreras Coll, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

Abdallah (24) and his whole family have been working as circus riders for generations. They have a farm a bit outside the Gaza City and give daily shows for free on the beach. Gaza City, Palestine 2016. From the series Like a Bird © Johanna Maria Fritz, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

The circus students from Bamyan City and Yakawlang have just met. It is rare that in spacious country of Afghanistan, where overland trips on the bad roads are long and strenuous that circuses from different provinces or cities get to meet. Together they juggle the main road up and down, then it’s finally time for the big performance. A few men are sitting on the roofs and gaze down on the performance on the village square. The village women are sitting on the wall of the dam, watching the spectacle from the sidelines Yakawlang, Bamyan province, Afghanistan 2017. From the series Like a Bird © Johanna Maria Fritz, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

From the series Like a Bird © Johanna Maria Fritz, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

Goran Dakovic, a miner from the former Yugoslavia, searches for any trace of opal on the wall. He works with a circular tunneling machine, allowing him to potentially have access to more opal. Coober Pedy, Australia 2016. From the series Underland © Tamara Merino Bloch, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

Manuel Gonzales, 77 years old, and Encarna Sanchez, 75 years old, pose for a portrait in their living room. This cave was the house of Encarna’s family. She was born in a room at the end of this cave and Manuel was also born and raised in the caves of Guadix. Nowadays they both live with their dog in the cave inherited from her mother. Guadix, Spain 2018. From the series Underland © Tamara Merino Bloch, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

Juan, 8 years old, Ainara 10 years old and Judith 12 years old, play in the abandoned caves next to their house. Guadix is considered the “European Capital of Caves” for its approximate 2000 underground houses spread over an area of 200 hectares of land, most of them continue to inhabit about 4500 troglodyte citizens. Guadix, Spain 2018. From the series Underland © Tamara Merino Bloch, which won an Honourable Mention in the New Generation Prize

From the series Deep Land © Roselyn Ramistella, which won the Vogue Italia Prize awarded by Alessia Glaviano

From the series Äimärautio © Kati Leinonen, which won the Vogue Italia prize awarded by Chiara Bardelli Nonino

From the series Hiding From Baba Yaga © Nanna Heinemann, which won the Vogue Italia prize awarded by Francesca Marani

From the series Psyche © Ayline Olukman, which won the Verzasca Foto Prize

From the series Psyche © Ayline Olukman, which won the Verzasca Foto Prize