A haunting image of red robes hung on crosses along a highway, with a Rainbow in the background, to remember the minors who died in a boarding school created to assimilate the aboriginal children in canadawon the prestigious Thursday World Press Photo Award.
The image is part of a series of Canadian photographer Amber Bracken on the kamloops boarding school for New York Times.
“This is the type of image that is saved in memory. Inspires some sort of sensory responseJury President Rena Effendi said in a statement. “I could almost hear the stillness of this photograph, a silent moment of global recognition of the history of colonization, not just in Canada, but around the world.“.
This isn’t the first time the Amsterdam-based competition has rewarded Bracken’s work. gWon first prize in the Contemporary Issues category in 2017 for his images of demonstrations against the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.
His last victory came less than a week after the dad francisco presented a historic apology to indigenous peoples for the “deplorable” abuses committed in the Catholic residential schools of Canada and asked for forgiveness.
Last May, the nation Tk’emlups te Secwepemc announced the discovery of 215 graves near Kamloopsin the British Columbia. It was the largest indigenous boarding school in the country and the discovery was the first of many equally sinister locations detected across the country.
“So we started having, I guess, an imitation of some of the kids who went to those schools and didn’t come back.Bracken said in remarks distributed by organizers. “TThere were also these little crosses by the side of the road. And I knew right away that I wanted to photograph the line of these crosses with the clothes of these little ones hanging to remember and honor these children and make them visible in a way that they hadn’t been in a long time.“.
Indigenous peoples from other parts of the world won two more of the annual competition’s top prizes. Winners were chosen from 64,823 photographs and open-format works by 4,066 photographers from 130 countries.
australian photographer Matthew Abbott won in the category of Photographic Story of the Year for a series of images Photos by National Geographic/Panos documenting how he fights the burns down the Nawarddeken community in West Arnhem Landin the north of Australiaintentionally burning brush to remove fuel that could start larger fires.
In the category of long term project the work of the Brazilian has been recognized Lalo de Almeida for a series of photos Pictures of Folha de Sao Paulo/Panos entitled “amazon dystopiawhich shows the exploitation of the region, especially in indigenous communities forced to deal with environmental degradation.
At regional awards announced earlier, Bram Jansenof Associated presswon in the category stories in asia with a series on a cinema in Kabuland the photographer AP Dar Yasin He received an honorable mention for his work entitled “endless war” in Cashmere.
Yasin, along with Mukhtar Khan and Channi Anand, won the Pulitzer Prize in 2020 for his coverage of the war in Kashmir.