The spectacle of nature in the shots of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year – Milan

Angel Fitor, Face to face. Portfolio Award Winner © Angel Fitor, Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Milan – The 100 images awarded at the 57th Wildlife Photographer of the Year, the most important competition dedicated to nature photography in the world. From September 30th to December 31st at Palazzo Francesco Turati the finalist shots of a competition will be presented which saw almost 50,000 photographs from every corner of the planet competing, and of course the winning images, selected by a jury of international experts under the aegis of the Natural History Museum in London.

© Lasse Kurkela, Wildlife Photographer of the Year

The protagonists of the upcoming shots are animals of all species, but also the landscapes of a planet in transformation, for a spectacular glance at the beauty, biodiversity and fragility of nature in the five continents. The photographers surprised them in expressive poses, extremely dynamic actions and curious behaviors, sometimes almost human, or transfigured into amazing graphic effects, between shapes and colors that almost do not seem real. Spaniard Sergio Marijuàn, for example, had to wait months for his ingenious camera trap to capture the desired image: a young Iberian lynx perfectly framed on the threshold of an old barn. Hunting and the loss of natural habitat had pushed this fascinating feline to the brink of extinction and in 2002 there were fewer than 100 specimens across Spain. Thanks to the efforts made in their defense, today the lynxes are returning to populate the countryside of the country.

Sergio Marijuàn, Lynx on the Treshold, Highly Commendend in the 2021 Urban Life cathegory © Sergio Marijuán

From the depths of the sea to the vast expanses of the sky, up to the thousand environments of the mainland, the infinite variety of nature is revealed in an equally lively collection of styles and approaches to photography. On display we will find the awarded images divided according to the categories of the competition – Amphibians and reptiles, Animals in their environment, The art of nature, Urban nature, Invertebrates, Mammals, Oceans: the overview, Plants and mushrooms, Animal Portraits, Underwater, Birds, Wetlands: the overview – as well as three sections dedicated to very young photographers divided by age groups and documentary categories Award for the best portfolio, Photojournalistic History Award, Rising Star Portfolio Award And Photojournalism.

Laurent Ballesta, Creation. Worldlife Photographer of the Year 2021 Award © Laurent Ballesta

Overall winner of the 57th edition of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year is the image Creationby the French biologist and underwater photographer Laurent Ballesta. The shot portrays a herd of groupers swimming in a milky cloud during spawning in Fakarava, French Polynesia: a unique moment, which occurs only once a year during the July full moon, and increasingly rare because the species is endangered due to intensive fishing. The Polynesian lagoon is one of the few places where these fish still manage to thrive in the wild: Ballesta took five years of stalking to photograph them.
“The image works on so many levels: it is striking, energetic, intriguing and has an otherworldly beauty,” commented jury president Rosamund Roz Kidman Cox Obe: “Capture a magical moment – a truly explosive creation of life – leaving the tail of laid eggs suspended for an instant, like a symbolic question mark ”.

Vidyun R Hebbar, Dome Home. Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021 Award © Vidyun R Hebbar

Amazement and admiration also welcomed Dome Home by the very young Indian photographer Vidyun R Hebbar, who at the age of 10 won the Young Wildlife Photographer award with the image of a spider suspended in the crevice of a wall. “The jury loved this shot from the start. It’s a great reminder to take a close look at the small animals we live with every day and to take your camera with you everywhere. You never know where the winning image might come from, ”observes Natalie Cooper, a researcher at the Natural History Museum in London and a member of the commission called to evaluate the works in competition. “It’s such an imaginative way to photograph a spider. The image is perfectly framed, the focus is spot on. The fangs of the spider and the insane texture of the trap stand out, the threads as a delicate network of nerves connected to the animal’s paws. But the most original part is the addition of a creative background: the bright colors of a motorized rickshaw, ”explained President Roz Kidman Cox Obe.

© Lara Jackson, Wildlife Photographer of the Year

The winners also include five Italian photographers: Stefano Unterthiner is the winner of the section Behavior-Mammals and special mentions were awarded to Mattia Terreo (Under 10), Giacomo Redaelli (Category 15-17 years), Georg Kantioler (Urban Wildlife) And Bruno D’Amicis (Photojournalism).

© Jonny Armstrong, Wildlife Photographer of the Year

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