The well-known Leica Oskar Barnack Award has been presented regularly for four decades - an occasion for Leica Camera AG to further increase the reputation of this renowned photo award through a new selection process.
So far, participation in the competition has been through an application process. This year the finalists and ultimately the winners will be nominated by Nominators for the first time. This panel is made up of 70 world-famous, high-ranking photography experts from over 30 countries. The Nominators for India include the following experts:
Tarun Khiwal's life journey as a photographer began 30 years ago. With no formal training in the subject, his skills as a photographer were acquired and developed hands-on, learning through his mistakes. Throughout this journey, Tarun has explored the medium without any inhibition; challenging and questioning every rule and notion that governs the visual language.
It has been this fearless approach in expressing his vision that has won him the praise of many, national and international accolades, the likes of which include being the first and only Indian to be honored as a Hasselblad Master.
Tarun is also the first Indian whose work was chosen for the Swiss light manufacturer Broncolor’s annual calendar in 2012, which for the first time saw the calendar deviate from its standard imagery and print blurry fashion images created by Tarun. He was also featured in Tom Ang’s book ‘The Complete Photographer’ as one of the world's 20 top professional photographers.
Tarun’s work has been extensively published in national and international magazines Tank, Vogue, GQ, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Marie Claire, L’Officiel, and more. His portfolio today includes clients such as Emirates, L’Oréal, Maybelline, Emmar, Adidas, Nokia, Motorola, Pepsi, Hutch, Nestlé, Sony, Nike, Reebok and Lakme. He has created images of several personalities including international artists Christy Turlington Burns, Yanni, Kitaro and Bollywood superstars, as well as corporate honchos.
Taras Taraporvala is a commercial photographer with over 10 years of industry experience based out of Mumbai, India. Known best for his celebrity portraiture, Taras' work has been featured on the covers of Vogue, Elle, Harper's Bazaar, Grazia and other magazines. He has also worked with commercial brands including Swarovski, Reebok, Adidas, Forever New, ForeverMark, Bobbi Brown, Smashbox and many others.
Pablo Bartholomew is a self-taught photographer for nearly five decades. Revisiting his archives of work done between 1970 to 1983, he created a trilogy of exhibitions: Outside In, A Tale of Three Cities (2007); Bombay: Chronicles of a Past Life (2011); and The Calcutta Diaries (2012) and since 1979 has held over 30 international solo exhibitions at galleries, museums, biennales and photo festivals. His work is part of prominent collections worldwide.
His photojournalistic and documentary work, 1983 to 2004, has featured in every major international publication and has won him the World Press Photo award, three-times including the Picture of the Year 1985.
In 2013 he was bestowed the Padma Shri by the President of India, and in 2014 he received the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French government. He is currently continuing his long-term project on the Indian émigrés, alongside discovering his Burmese roots and expanding on the DNA based cross border project, which incorporates textiles and weaving between India, Bangladesh, and Burma.
Burman is a photographer born in India in the early 80s. He has his roots in a family of sculptors and painters . Naturally, art has always been a priority in Burman’s approach to photography. After graduating from the Brooks Institute of Photography in California in 2000, Burman moved to New York and worked as an assistant for Steven Klein and Mark Seliger. He returned to India in 2008 and started collaborating with with prestigious brands, also with magazines such as Elle and Vogue to name a very few. He has a certain propensity to create unique stories and a vision of his own. Always on the move, Burman works between Paris, New York and Mumbai, constantly exploring new ideas, new places, drawing on the abundant inspirations of his Eastern and Western philosophies.
When young Adnan Abidi took a glance at a picture of legendary photographer S Paul, little did he know that decades later he would be a two-time Pulitzer Award-winning photojournalist and among the chosen few the world would stand up and take note of.
As a kid, Adnan’s father gifted him a Yashica Point & Shoot Film Camera and that’s where his journey of exploring stories through the lens began. Unlike many of his peers, he did not have any formal education or training in photography, but Adnan’s zeal for storytelling saw him grow from being a Delhi-based dark room assistant in 1997 to an international photojournalist.
In a career spanning over 20 years, he worked with several leading news agencies such as the Pan-Asia News Agency (PANA), the Indo Photo News and Press Trust of India before joining Reuters in 2005. He has since then been working for the international agency, covering a gamut of subjects ranging from breaking news, politics, natural disasters, economics and sports to spot and feature news stories.
Over the last two decades, he has documented several momentous stories and unguarded events in history, such as the Kandahar IC-814 flight hijack (1999), the Indian tsunami (2004), the Kashmir earthquake (2005), the Nepal twin earthquakes (2015), the Cyclone Phailin in India (2013), the Afghan embeds, the Maldives coup, the Dhaka terrorist attack (2016) and the Hong Kong protests (2019), among others.
Adnan’s reportage on the Rohingya exodus of 2017 and later the student revolution during the Hong Kong protests of 2019 earned him two Pulitzer Awards in 2018 and 2020, respectively.
Today, his pictures regularly feed the cover pages of leading international publications such as The New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, The Independent, The Globe and Mail, and the Time magazine to name a few.
However, Adnan believes awards and publications are nothing but an unexpected bonus and what really matters is the love for the job that a new assignment brings every day – the thought-provoking emotions that emerge out of a story, from his lens to yours.
Leica Ambassador and Co-founder of APF Magazine.
Vineet Vohra is an internationally renowned street photographer from New Dehli, India. Well-appreciated by the street photography community in Asia, he has over the last decade made a significant contribution to street photography.
His images have often been cited as complex but playful, beautifully structured and contemporary. He is known for skillfully combining content, composition and light and multi-image sequences. The photographer's special skill is to create order in the chaos we often find on the street.
He also conducts photography workshops for Leica Akademie across the globe.