Water — Leica Oskar Barnack Award 2019


Leica Oskar Barnack Award 2019

The Leica Oskar Barnack Award celebrates photography that captures the relationship between man and his environment. Afterall, it was for this very reason that the Leica camera came about in the first place; the ambition to make a camera that was compact enough to enable you to capture images on your travels.

“In my view, there is not much difference telling a story now from how it was 50 years ago”

_ Steve McCurry, Photographer

© Mustafah Abdulaziz

As for the name, it makes sense to name the award after the man that is credited for creating the world’s first commercially viable 35mm camera — the Ur-Leica. It was 1913 when German photographer Oskar Barnack had the foresight to convert a 35mm cinematic camera to still camera use.

Since then cameras baring this name have created the standard in film photography, now translating this prowess to the digital format in a manner few thought was even possible.

The winner of this year’s award was Mustafah Abdulaziz; a photographer that captured the essence of the Award in his prolonged endeavour cultivating a project he has entitled “ Water ”.

“Water is s long-term project about how human beings interact with the natural world and what this means for our civilisation and our future.”

_ Mustafah Abdulaziz, LOBA Winner 2019

© Mustafah Abdulaziz

More of a photo-essay than a project per se, Water is a naturalistic documentary, telling the way different communities deal with our valuable resource that is water; it’s a commentary on human behaviour.

Through images that are as disparate as they are connected, the series shows water as it is — an indispensable part of our everyday existence. As Photographer and LOBA Judge Steve Curry notes, “The aesthetic compositions and the relationships he has developed with his subjects emphasize the despair men and women around the world face at the lack of the most basic and necessary resource.

© Mustafah Abdulaziz


For more on the Leica Oskar Barnack Award and to view the other finalists visit the Leica website here.

Comments (0)
Join the discussion
Read them all


Hide Comments

This is a unique website which will require a more modern browser to work!

Please upgrade today!