World Press Photo 2013 – Paul Hansen

The picture was retouched with respect to both global and local color and tone.  From http://www.worldpressphoto.org/awards/2013/spot-news/paul-hansen

The picture was retouched with respect to both global and local color and tone. From http://www.worldpressphoto.org/awards/2013/spot-news/paul-hansen

World Press Photo is an independent and non profit organization. Every year it organizes the most renowned press photography contest of the world. The contest is composed of a jury of thirteen people, which includes photographers, graphic designers and press agency managers who choose the best photographies from the year before.

Besides, the prizes are shared out in different categories such: Spot news, Sports, Nature or General News among others. The winner photograpfy of the Spot News category of this 56th edition is the one that caught my attention.

The photography was made by the photojournalist Paul Hansen in the Gaza city, in the south east of Israel. The photography shows a group of desperate men that move the corpse of two little children wrapped in white sheets, victims of a bombing of the israelí army.

Just as the Spanish newspaper El País published the jury was amazed by the way that the photographer captured the tragedy: “Everything is there, the pain and the wrath; the desperation and the loss. The strength of the picture is in the contrast of the children’s innocence. It can’t be forgotten.”, explained Mayu Mohanna, memeber of the jury. (http://cultura.elpais.com/cultura/2013/02/15/actualidad/1360920399_506600.html)

Paul Hansen has won ”Picture of the year” two times and  “Photographer of the Year” in Sweden seven times. From: www.worldpressphoto.org

Paul Hansen has won ”Picture of the year” two times and “Photographer of the Year” in Sweden seven times. From: http://www.worldpressphoto.org

After winning the prize, Hansen admitted that the events from that day in Gaza affected him a lot: “I cried so much, it was a terrible story. I believe that it will take me a lot of time to overcome what happened that day”, admitted the photographer. (http://www.quesabesde.com/noticias/paul-hansen-con-texto-fotografico_9579)

In mid of this year, the picture was dragged in the middle of a controversy: World Press Photo was thinking about taking the prize away from Paul Hansen for supposedly manipulating the winner photography beyond what the photography industry allows.

Finally, just as the World Press Photo published in a announcement (http://www.worldpressphoto.org/news/digital-photography-experts-confirm-integrity-paul-hansen-image-files), after the analysis of two experts it was determined that the picture wasn’t manipulated more that the photography industry allows. So he wasn’t taken the prize away. “We have reviewed the RAW image, and the resulting published JPEG image. It is clear that the published photo was retouched with respect to both global and local color and tone. Beyond this, however, we find no evidence of significant photo manipulation or compositing”, said World Press Photo.

By Lorena Roldán Galindo

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