“World Press Photo” 2020, a story about today’s visual journalism and digital storytelling

August 04, 2020 | Cosmina Oltean Art&Journalism

WPP, the most important photojournalism exhibition, toured in Romania until September 

Based on artistic and technical criteria specific to the photographic medium, today’s photojournalism proves more than ever that it is part of the artistic sphere. Even if this type of photography incorporates a news, it will also have artistic values.

The international photojournalism exhibition "World Press Photo", 63rd edition, arrived in Romania at the end of July and it will be hosted, until September, by the most important cultural centers in Cluj-Napoca, Bucharest and Timisoara. Between July 17th and August 6th 2020, the Cluj-Napoca Art Museum, with the support of the Cluj County Council, the Ministry of Culture and the Dutch Embassy in Romania, presents to the public the winning photos of the “World Press Photo” 2020 edition, underlining important aspects of today's society and stories that deserve and must be shown to the world. 


WPP exhibition displayed at the Art Museum in Cluj-Napoca


"World Press Photo" proves that indeed news can be told through a photograph, that an impact image can be equivalent to a journalistic text at any time. The “World Press Photo” exhibition is toured around the world, being presented in over 100 spaces from more than 45 countries and viewed by over 4.5 million visitors at each edition. In Romania, this unique photojournalism event is present due to the involvement of the Eidos Foundation from Bucharest, supported by a series of cultural institutions from Cluj-Napoca, Bucharest and Timișoara.

Before reaching the Art Museum in Cluj-Napoca, the 2020 edition of this prestigious international photojournalism exhibition has already been brought to the attention of the public in Amsterdam, Prague, Vilnius, Rome, Berlin, Alkmaar, Montreal, Dortmund and Barcelona. After Cluj-Napoca, the itinerary of the exhibition in Romania will include two other important destinations - the National Museum of Art in Timisoara (August 12th - August 31st) and the National Museum of Art of Romania in Bucharest (September 9-30), thanks to substantial efforts by the representatives of the Eidos Foundation who, despite the current terribly difficult pandemic context, were not at all tempted by the prospect of a possible countermanding this year edition of the "World Press Photo" event. The competition rewards photojournalists who have made a decisive contribution over the past year to the development of visual journalism. 

Photo by Art Museum in Cluj-Napoca


The story of "World Press Photo" began in 1955, when a group of professional photographers from the Netherlands organized a photojournalism contest. Growing up with each edition, the event has become a reference for this field. Every year, the professionalism and photojournalism talent is recognized and appreciated through the awards offered by the “World Press Photo” Foundation in Amsterdam. The main objectives of the foundation are the continuous support of professional photojournalism worldwide, with high visual standards and the exchange of technical and artistic knowledge.

This Dutch brand is strongly active in ensuring, consolidating and respecting the freedoms of expression and information, fundamental values ​​and, at the same time, fundamental rights that today, perhaps more than ever, risk being acutely endangered and, even worse, undermined under the "siege" of the devastating effects that the "fake news" phenomenon generates upon society. From the perspective of "World Press Photo", the only antidote, really, effective in actively combating the harmfulness of "misinformation and manipulation strategies" remains the profession of responsible and documented photojournalism, which restores the primacy of quality. WPP stands for the celebration of excellence in current news report, made in the interest of a correct and impartial information of the public.

Given that today's world, journalism and photography are undergoing seismic changes, WPP strives to help both visual journalists and their audiences understand and respond to these transformations so that these freedoms can be ensured, and also help in the fight against fake news. 

Photo by Art Museum in Cluj-Napoca


Why would it be worth seeing such an exhibition?

Because it gives you access to an overwhelming "radiography " of our time, a lucid, severe and unforgiving commentary, sometimes pigmented with notes of sarcasm to so-called contemporary "emergencies and priorities", but of whose eloquence has the power to expose the arbitrary or, perhaps the illusory "order" that, consciously or not, we all sanctify, no matter where we are placed in the world.

At the current edition of "World Press Photo" 4,282 photographers from 125 countries submitted 73,996 photos. Of these, only 44 photographers reached the final selection of the jury and got on dispay.



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