Four photographers named
The Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize, sponsored for the sixth time by international law firm Taylor Wessing, continues the Gallery's long tradition of championing the very best contemporary portrait photography. The Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize will showcase the work of some of the most talented emerging young photographers, alongside that of established professionals, photography students and gifted amateurs. Selected anonymously from an open competition, the diversity of styles reflects the international mix of entrants as well as the range of approaches to the portrait genre, encompassing editorial, advertising and fine art images. This year's selected artists include: Anoush Abrar, Dorothee Deiss, Spencer Murphy, and Giles Price.
Born in Tehran, Iran, Anoush Abrar has lived in Switzerland since he was five years old. He studied at the University of Arts in Lausanne and has taught for 14 years. His portrait of Kofi Annan, the Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations until 2006, was commissioned by ZEIT Magazine and published in March 2013. Abrar had photographed Mr Annan previously and he says he knew that time was of the essence. 'In my mind it was clear what I wanted to do', he says.
Dorothee Deiss lives and works as photographer and pediatric endocrinologist in Berlin. Born 1961 in Münsingen/ Württ, she studied medicine in Freiburg/Breisgau and since then she has been working as a pediatrician. Since 2003 she has studied photography at the Fotografie am Schiffbauerdamm and at the Ostkreuzschule school for photography and design, Berlin. From 2010-13 she studied in the 'limited residency MFA in Photography' programme at Hartford Art School, USA, where she received her MFA in August 2013.
Spencer Murphy grew up in Kent and studied at the Kent Institute of Art and Design before gaining a BA in Photography at Falmouth College of Arts. Taken at Kempton Park Racecourse his portrait of Katie Walsh was taken whilst shooting a series of jump jockeys' portraits for Channel Four's The Original Extreme Sport campaign. 'I set up at the side of the racecourse and pulled in the jockeys as they finished their races, 'he says, 'I was keen to include Katie. I wanted to show both her femininity and the toughness of spirit she requires to compete against the best riders in one of the most demanding disciplines in horse racing.
Hertfordshire-based Giles Price has exhibited widely and has been commissioned by several magazines and newspapers. His interest in photography began while on military service. He joined the Royal Marine Commandos at 16 and served in northern Iraq and Kurdistan at the end of the first Gulf War in 1991. After leaving the military due to injuries sustained in Iraq he went on to do a BA in Photographic Studies at University of Derby in 1994-7. His portrait is from a series shot at the 2013 Kumbh Mela Festival in Allahabad India. Taken outside the main hospital in a pop up studio, the portrait shows Mamta who was on a pilgrimage to the Kumbh.
The winner of the £12,000 prize will be announced November 12, and the exhibition will run from 14 November 2013 – 9 February 2014 at the National Portrait Gallery, London.