The Singapore International Photography Festival (SIPF) came to a close on Oct 31 and crowned our very own Robert Zhao as the winner of the festival’s first ever Emerging Artist Award for South East Asian Photographers. The Emerging Artist Award is given to up-and-coming photographic talents from the region.
“Photography is a means, not an end. Robert showed a concept and intent that was very contemporary; works that were so photo-realistic yet entirely fictional. They weren’t just beautiful pictures, they were a means to a reaction, a quality of investigation that captures our imagination, and that is a fascinating way to understanding images.” says Festival Curator Terence Yeung.
Festival Director Gwen Lee says, “I’m extremely heartened by the fact that Fred Baldwin actually told me the work he saw during the Emerging Artists Series was many times better than those he’d seen worldwide; works from creative people who knew what they wanted to do and what their work was all about. It means a lot coming from Fred, as he’s a world renowned festival director with decades of experience. This proves that Southeast Asian artists do indeed have works that are worthy to be seen on the international stage, and it is the SIPF’s mission to bring them there.”
She continued, “This year, being the Festival’s first, saw many challenges and was a good learning platform. It’s really encouraging to see the local photography scene grow and get involved as volunteers, because that’s how a community matures. In 2010, we’re aiming for bigger and better, and we’re going to need all the help we can get!”
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