More than 160 photo reporters from over 37 countries have taken part in the second edition of WaRS – War And Revolutionary Stories, the international photography award created by Associazione 46° Parallelo/Atlante delle Guerre e dei Conflitti del Mondo and Montura, sponsor of the contest, together with the NGO INTERSOS and Fondazione Museo Storico del Trentino. The attention for photography and for high-quality photojournalism has always been part of our project: the opportunity to reward photo reporters from all over the world for bringing our audience closer to the reality they depict was a long-time dream. A dream that we were finally able to make true in 2019, and then again in 2021, with a renewed attention to all aspects of humanitarian crises. 

Check out the virtual exhibition, hosting the photo reportages from the two winners of the latest edition of the WaRS contest: it is available at this link until February 25, 2022. 

Two were the categories for this year’s award: one dedicated to COVID-19 stories, and one for conflicts and humanitarian crises. “The reason we added a Covid-19 category” explains Fabio Bucciarelli, photo reporter and artistic director of the competition “is that the pandemic, besides changing our lives, has also changed the way photojournalists conduct their work. Due to the restrictions on travel, many were forced to photograph and rediscover their home territory, throwing themselves into potentially very long projects”.

The winner of the conflict section is Giles Clarke with a work on the war in Yemen. Two finalists: Finbarr O’Reilly with a project on Tigray and Stepanov Anatolii ,with a photo reportage from Ukraine. Winning in the Covid-19 category was Michele Spatari proposing images from the pandemic in South Africa. The category finalists were Rodrigo Abd, with a reportage on Peru and Yan Boechat with a project on the Amazon.

The winners were chosen by a trio of exceptional jurors: Kelli Grant, Photo Director of Yahoo News, photojournalist Francis Kohn, and photojournalist Laurence Geai, winner of the first edition of Wars with her work in Mosul.

“The winners – Bucciarelli continues – as well as other participants, have submitted long-term projects they had dedicated months to, even years.  This is in line with the way we operate, too: taking time to tell stories, to get close to the people, to create empathy. A journalistic practice that, we believe, can be an antidote to fake news”.

The second edition of WaRS saw the participation of photo reporters from all kinds of countries, with proposals which varied greatly from each other. “The winners and the four finalists – Bucciarelli concludes –  have submitted very different works, but in general all of the projects were highly heterogeneous: a testimony to how the world of photojournalism is extremely lively and in ferment”.


Cover image: Giles Clarke