The VISIONARY AWARD by the Tim Hetherington Trust


The Tim Hetherington Trust today announced a shortlist of six visual communicators, one of whom will receive £20,000 and specialist mentorship to create a piece of work that pushes the boundaries of documentary narrative.  Sixty two candidates were nominated by media experts and thought-leaders on five continents, demonstrating an astounding diversity of talent working in every available medium to share rich and thoughtful material.  Although only one award will be given in this first round, the shortlist reflects the Trust's ambition for a richer media environment that reflects the complexities of life from many different perspectives.  The shortlisted finalists include artists form every career stage from a recent college graduate through to established practitioners with successful projects already achieved, working with photography, video, interactive multimedia, installations, performance, all high levels of interaction with subjects and audience.

Stephen Mayes, Executive Director of the Tim Hetherington Trust said, "Knowing that we just scratched the surface with our first global search for talent, I can see that the future is bright, maybe even dazzling!  Our small sample reveals a dynamic resource of energy, insight, commitment and imagination, which in combination with new technology is unlocking a world of knowledge and even more importantly, understanding far beyond the limits of 20th Century journalism."  

The first award will be announced in March 2015.

Dominic BRACCO II (USA, Mexico) - The Backs Of Men

The Backs of Men is a portrait of the modern American frontier. Set in the borderlands of Texas, Mexico, and the killing fields of Honduras, this project attempts to break down the physical and societal borders we place around ourselves. The three chapters of this work, composed of photography, video, and theatre, follow reciprocal patterns of violence and poverty and tell the stories of those it displaces. 


Erika DIETTES (Colombia) - Reliquaries

Reliquaries is an installation that meditates on the disappeared of Colombia through photography and precious personal objects donated by families of the victims.  The objects are encased in amber-like substance and arranged in a corridor where observers walk as they would in a cemetery, guided by the light reflected through the Reliquaries at their feet.  Erika quotes photographer Francisco Boix, “Sooner or later, graves will always speak, and the images will eventually take the floor and shed light on the story.”


Andrew Michael ELLIS & MEDIASTORM (USA) - Fight Hate With Love

For Michael Tabon, being black, young, and poor in America made incarceration feel inescapable. It was behind bars he realized his true destiny: to be a one-man prison and premature death prevention power movement. Fight Hate with Love explores what is possible and what is sacrificed when a man tries to change the world at all costs.



Jack HATTON (UK) - Ghana Oil and Navigating the Resource Curse

West Africa is home to some of the world’s fastest-growing economies, many of them buoyed by new oil and gas exploration. As told through its landscape and people, this project will interrogate the socio-economic and environmental impact of oil in Ghana.  Portraits and interviews with those invested in and affected by the oil industry will be incorporated into ‘The Perfect Map’, styled on Google Street View, creating a unique view of what's happening on the surface of our planet whilst describing the impact of an industry that thrives below.


Kel O’NEILL & Eline JONGSMA (USA, Netherlands) – The Ark

The northern white rhinoceros once inhabited a great portion of sub-Saharan Africa. Now only five remain, and all of them live—and will die—as tourist attractions. Shot in Kenya and the U.S., "The Ark" is an immersive documentary that explores how contemporary conservation tactics reflect Western attitudes toward Africa. The piece delivers two parallel stories: while armed park rangers in Kenya keep watch over the last surviving herd, scientists in San Diego attempt to “de-extinct” the rhino using stem cell technology.


Top image © Erika Diettes from the project "RELIQUARIES"

Lower image Image © Kel O'Neill & Eline Jongsma "The Mars Desert Research Station, Utah 2014 (from EXIT)



The VISIONARY AWARD by the Tim Hetherington Trust