2009 William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize Exhibition

The artist Paul Knight has won Australia's most prestigious photographic award, the $20 000 William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize for 2009.

Art Exhibition previously on at Monash Gallery of Art in Victoria, Australia.
From Friday 06 November 2009 to Sunday 13 December 2009

14 months # 01 2008 image

Published by Monash Gallery of Art on Wednesday 16 December 2009.
Contact the publisher.

Knight’s photograph 14 months # 01 was selected by the eminent judging panel as the standout work among the more than 2 000 photographs submitted for this year’s prize.

After a rigorous selection process, judges Anne Ferran, Helen Ennis and MGA Director Shaune Lakin chose Knight’s intimate portrayal of a man and woman because of its visual purity and tremendous empathy for its subject .

Knight is one of Australia’s most significant young photographers. His work is represented in many public collections, including the National Gallery of Victoria, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, and Monash Gallery of Art. He is represented by Neon Parc.

The prize, presented at the MGA on Thursday 26 November at 7:00pm, is a wonderful opportunity to view some of the most important Australian photography produced over the past year.

Melbourne artist Owen Leong was the winner of the $1 000 People’s Choice Award.
Established in 2006 to promote excellence in photography, the annual non-acquisitive William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize is an initiative of the MGA Foundation . It has quickly become Australia’s most important photography prize.

Shaune Lakin, Director of MGA, said of the winning work: “The field of finalists for this year’s prize was incredibly competitive. However, in the end, Paul’s photograph stood out. It is a beautifully composed study of intimacy. It is a sensitive and wonderfully controlled picture which reduces photography to its essentials and reminds us that photography can give us insights into the world and ourselves. Knight has given us a picture of real people, one loaded with empathy and love. Strangely, in the act of looking at this small photograph, we too become intimate with its subject. It’s a tremendous achievement.”

In recognition of the strength of this year’s field, the judges made three honorable mentions: Siri Hayes, Simon Terrill and Christian Thompson were commended for their fine entries.

See all finalists works on Flickr