press release

The Photographers' Gallery has announced the shortlist for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2006, which will be on show at the Gallery from 17 February - 23 April 2006. The shortlist is:

Robert Adams (USA) Yto Barrada (Morocco) Phil Collins (UK) Alec Soth (USA)

The Deutsche Börse Photography Prize aims to reward a living photographer, of any nationality, who has made the most significant contribution to the medium of photography in Europe between 1 November 2004 - 30 September 2005. For more information on the nomination process please visit About the Photography Prize.

Robert Adams (b.1937, USA) has been shortlisted for his exhibition Turning Back, A Photographic Journal of Re-exploration at Haus der Kunst in Munich, Germany (29 June–25 September 2005). Adams’s delicate silver-gelatin prints, taken between 1999 and 2003, are an exploration of the topography of the north-western United States, as it changes from the Pacific Coast to the open planes of eastern Oregon. For over 40-years, Adams’s photographs have documented the impact industrial development has had on the landscape of the American West, where he grew up and still lives. Inspired by the bicentennial of the Lewis and Clark expedition between 1804 and 1806, Turning Back offers a personal and unsparing look at how a landscape has been scarred by de-forestation, industrial development and human habitation.

Yto Barrada (b. 1971, Morocco. has been shortlisted for the exhibition A Life Full of Holes – the Strait Project at Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool and which was produced in collaboration with Autograph ABP, London (12 February – 2 April 2005). This photography project poetically explores issues of migration, diaspora, access and exclusion. Over the last 15 years, the Strait of Gibraltar has become one of the main gateways for illegal immigration. Barrada's photographs, taken between 1998 and 2004, capture the temptations of leaving, and the unfulfilled hopes of escaping across the Strait into Europe. Living and working in both Paris and Tangier, Barrada’s parallel experience of these cities informs her practice, and offers an effective and challenging suggestion to the aesthetic fetishism that has long characterised Western representations of this part of the world.

Phil Collins (b.1970, UK) has been shortlisted for his exhibition yeah… you, baby you at Milton Keynes Gallery, UK (9 April–29 May 2005). Collins's work has involved photography, video and music. His projects are often the culmination of a prolonged period of contact between the artist and the individuals pictured in his work. Dealing with some of the most extreme human situations and experiences – love and death, war and loss - there is also a strong element of humour and energy within Collins's work. Through choreographing seemingly playful scenarios, and inviting his subjects to actively participate in the creative process of representation, Collins’s practice subtly challenges the documentary medium while retaining an incisive political and social dimension.

Alec Soth (b.1969, USA) has been shortlisted for his exhibition Sleeping by the Mississippi at Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool, UK (4 December 2004–5 February 2005). Between 1999 and 2004, Soth undertook several trips following the trail of the Mississippi River from Minnesota south to Louisiana. Photographing the people and landscapes he encountered resulted in a methodical as well as deeply personal and poetic photographic travelogue. The mythology of this river has inspired artists, writers and musicians for decades and Soth offers up his own poignant and compelling view of this place and its inhabitants. Like a series of lyrical fragments all linked by the trail of the river, Soth carries on the tradition of the itinerant documentary photographer in a new and refreshing way.

In 2006 The Photographers' Gallery will celebrate 10 years of the annual Photography Prize and continues its commitment to showcasing new talent and highlighting the best of international photography practice. With generous support from the title sponsors, Deutsche Börse Group, the Prize continues as one of the most prominent exhibitions at The Photographers’ Gallery and is firmly placed amongst the most prestigious international arts awards.

The Jury for 2006 is: Anne-Marie Beckmann, Curator, Art Collection Deutsche Börse (Frankfurt), Thomas Demand, artist (Berlin), Emma Dexter, Curator, Tate Modern (London) and Régis Durand, Director, Jeu de Paume (Paris).

Brett Rogers, Chair and Director of The Photographers’ Gallery, said: 'The shortlist of candidates for the 2006 Photography Prize, made by this years Jury, reflects the current diversity of international photography in Europe. The work of all four photographers investigates the often complicated relationship between humans and their surroundings. Taking subjects with strong contemporary relevance, they represent some of the most interesting and challenging positions within the photographic field today.'

Axel Nawrath, Managing Director of Deutsche Börse Group said: 'Once again, the Academy has proposed an impressive list of projects and the Jury have selected four very strong finalists, all of whom reflect the aims of the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize. The shortlist for 2006 highlights the range of nominees, varying in age, nationality and renown, as well as in their technique, subject matter and artistic approach. As title sponsors, we are proud to support the Photography Prize, which over the past ten years has recognised exceptional achievements and launched many careers. True to its international spirit, the exhibition of the finalists will be shown in London, Frankfurt and a third European city.'


Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2006

shortlist: Robert Adams, Yto Barrada, Phil Collins, Alec Soth