The exhibition consits of two projects, that won in last year’s edition of one of the most prestigious photography contests. The 2013 Leica Oskar Barnack Award goes to Evgenia Arbugaeva for her photo pro- ject ‘Tiksi’. Born in Siberia, she has been awarded for a portfolio of images from a project shot in the small town on the Arctic coast of nor- thern Siberia. The international jury chosen Ciril Jazbec from Slovenia as the winner of the 2013 Leica Oskar Barnack Newcomer Award. His portfolio of images entitled ‘Waiting to move’ tells the story of an Inuit village in Alaska facing the threat of global warming.
In ‘Tiksi’, Evgenia Arbugaeva takes a closer look at her birthplace and everyday life in the Arctic. In an intensely emotive and poetic manner, the photographer infuses her images of the Arctic desolation and the icebound landscape and its residents with a particularly fascinating be- auty. She presents scenes of everyday life in plain and simple images without distracting details. Her photographs show the struggle of the people against the never-ending cold, deprivation and loneliness. At the same time, the photographer captures her home town with a warm and loving eye. Her photos radiate an almost fairy-tale magic that above all captures the imagination of their viewers.
Evgenia Arbugaeva, born in 1985, works as a freelance photographer in Russia and USA. Her work has been shown in various exhibitions and published in magazines like Elite Traveller and Zoom.
In his portfolio ‘Waiting to move’, the winner of the Newcomer Award, Ciril Jazbec, sets his focus on recording the daily life and vanishing tra- ditions of the Inupiaq Inuit people of Shishmaref. The village, situated on a narrow island off the coast of north-west Alaska, is threatened by global warming and the consequently rising sea level. In 2002, the re- sidents voted to relocate their entire village to the nearby mainland to preserve their community. Since then, they have been waiting for the fi- nancial means to realise their move, but this has not yet been approved by the US government. The emotional images shot by Ciril Jazbec cap- ture the mood of waiting and simultaneously document the solidarity of a small community caught between traditions and the modern age. Al- though their future looks bleak, the villagers demonstrate outstanding unity. This unity is the source of the energies that ensure that the hope of a new future is never lost.
Ciril Jazbec was born in1987 in a small, idyllic village in Slovenia where he also grew up. Before studying photojournalism at the London College of Communication, he studied business sciences with a focus on manage- ment. Ciril Jazbec has worked as an advertising photographer for nume- rous Slovenian, Croatian and British agencies since the age of 20.
Leica Oskar Barnack Award is one of the most important photography contests in the world. The top prize of Leica M camera equipment va- luing around 10,000 euros and a cash prize of 5,000 euros, plus the Newcomer Award (also a Leica M, with one lens), were presented in the course of the Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie in Arles in France. More than 2,200 photographers from 101 countries responded to the invitation to submit entries to the international competition. The majority of the entries received were from Germany, the USA, Russia and Italy. In 2013 the jury members included: Karin Rehn-Kaufmann, artistic director of the Leica Gallery in Salzburg; Dimitri Beck, editor -in-chief of Polka magazine; Markus Schaden, publisher and freelance curator; Brigitte Schaller, art director of LFI magazine; and the two pho- tographers Klavdij Sluban and Peter Turnley.
The two winning portfolios plus the images submitted by the nine fi- nalists of the Leica Oskar Barnack Award can all be seen in a special edition of LFI magazine (Special Edition 2013), together with interviews and background stories.