Started in 1989, Visa pour l’image has become a fundamental point, an undeniable act taking place every year in Perpignan, France. More than a common festival for people keen on photography, but an institution and an eyes-opener: fifteen days dedicated to photojournalism, giving a photographic perspective on reality; pictures taken through the eyes of some of the most well-known and acclaimed lenses from every part of the world and conferences given by professionals.

Every year the festival awards the best pictures, with four nominated artist for every category: Visa d’or Paris Match NewsVisa d’or Magazine, Figaro Magazine Lifetime Achievement Visa D’or Award, Visa d’or for the Best Digital Story, Visa D’or Daily Press Award and many others.

Well known is, for example, the winner of the the Visa d’or News from 2012: the striking image taken by Éric Bouvet for the Figaro Magazine shows a cadaver covered by a  crimson drape, all around nothing but the sharp silence of the just “conquered” Bāb al-Azīzyya (Muammar Gaddafi’s “Splendid Gate”).

This year winners have been announced and, as usual, the images are staggering.

Visa d’or Paris Match News Award went to Laurent Van der Stockt for Le Monde: the picture portrays a child in Mosul, Iraq.
29th of June changed the life of Iraqis: local army is willing to conquer
 Al-Nuri mosque again, to achieve this target they advance from house to house, blowing up their ways with brick of plastique explosive, without caring for residents.

Mosul, Iraq, 29th of june 2017: The army, the federal police and special forces of the iraqi counter-terrorism services start togheter their new advance in the center of the old city of Mosul, the district of the Al-Nouri mosque, where Al-Bagdadi took his only public speech to proclame the creation of the caliphate.
A commando of special forces start his advance in the Is controlled territory. The Al-Nuri mosque area will be surrounded. The advance is from house to house, with the help of the air strikes of the coalition, by openings already made by Is, by opening twih hammer or by blowing up new ways with brick of plastique explosive. The commando in front of the base of the minaret Al Hadba destroyed by members of the Islamic State.
Civilians are coming out of their houses, in rubble of the buildings destroyed by bombardments.
Photo © Laurent Van der Stockt for Le Monde/Getty Images Reportage

Visa d’or Magazine award was given to Daniel Berehulak for The New York Times. His powerful pictures were shot in the Philippines, the title “They are Slaughtering Us Like Animals” resounds in the viewer as much as the pictures: President Rodrigo Duterte’s antidrug campaign is to blame for the “57 homicide victims over 35 days” documented by the photojournalist, but since the start of his presidential mandate  2000 people died in brutal ways and more than 35600 people have been arrested.

[quote_box name=””]”I witnessed bloody scenes just about everywhere imaginable — on the sidewalk, on train tracks, in front of a girls’ school, outside 7-Eleven stores and a McDonald’s restaurant, across bedroom mattresses and living-room sofas.” Daniel Berehulak[/quote_box]

Jimji (6), in anguish screaming “Papa!” before the funeral of Jimboy Bolasa (25). His body, showing signs of torture as well as gunshot wounds, was found under a bridge. The police said he was a drug dealer, but according to his family, Bolasa had surrendered earlier, answering President Duterte’s call to follow what was supposed to be a drug-treatment program. Manila, October 10, 2016. © Daniel Berehulak for The New York Times
Michael Araja (29) was one of a number of people gunned down at a “sari-sari” street kiosk. Neighbors said he had gone to buy cigarettes and a drink for his wife when he was shot dead by two men on a motorcycle, a “riding in tandem killing” which is a common modus operandi. Officers from SOCO (Scene Of the Crime Operations) are gathering evidence. Manila, October 2, 2016. © Daniel Berehulak for The New York Times

Founded 150 years ago, ICRC had the purpose of assisting and protecting people living in zones of armed conflict and in situations of violence. This year ICRC Humanitarian Visa d’or – International Committee of the Red Cross award goes to Angela Ponce Romero for her “Ayacucho“, a report on missing people in Peru: the savage conflict causing so many losses been going on for more than fifty years, yet the Shining Path guerrilla group (lead by a communist party) and government forces fight seems far from being over.

A young woman from Cayara taking flowers to commemorate the dead. Ayacucho, Peru, 2017 © Angela Ponce Romero – Winner of the Humanitarian Visa d’or award – International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) 2017

Figaro Magazine Lifetime Achievement Visa d’or Award was assigned to Michael Nichols, renown for his work at National Geographic, everybody saw his “Orphans no more”, portraying young elephants that managed to run away from poaching.

At the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT) orphanage. Nairobi National Park, Kenya, 2010 © Michael Nichols / National Geographic Creative


These are just few of the amazing photojournalist awarded, on the website you will find more.

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About the Author

Graduated in Art & Management and now tirelessly studying Visual Arts. Started as a music journalist and now unfailingly tries to write about everything that catches her insatiable interest.

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