The ING Unseen Talent Award is a collaborative initiative by ING and Unseen to showcase new talents in photography from all over Europe. Through this award, ING aims at making art more accessible to a broader audience, while supporting contemporary photographers; stemming from ING’s mission to enhance a culture of innovation and change, the award for new talent was initiated in 2013.

In the course of the next three months, this year’s finalists will undergo extensive coaching by South African photographer and professor Adam Broomberg, known as half of the internationally renowned artist duo Broomberg & Chanarin. Under his supervision, the selected artists will create new work within the theme Nature of Change, giving them the opportunity to reflect on the evolution of society and nature.

We’re delighted to announce the finalists of this year’s edition!

Elena Aya Bundurakis (b. 1988, Greece)

In her recent work, Elena Aya Bundurakis creates dreamy compositions that revolve around her so-called ‘4 Fs: my Flesh, my Food, Fauna and Flora’. The work explores the boundaries between the artificial and natural, reality and fantasy, and reflects on our shared experience as living organisms.

Ulla Deventer (b. 1984, Germany)

Ulla Deventer’s long-term art projects explore issues of the representation and perception of the female body, sexuality, desires and taboos, while questioning the interdependencies of women on social norms. Subsequently, she explores new ways of visual storytelling in photography and across media.

The Voltic Bottle © Ulla Deventer

 Irene Fenara (b. 1990, Italy)

The central element of Irene Fenara’s work is the way we look and see. Recently, she has specifically focused on the way that surveillance cameras often serve to record and control a space and the people in it. She uses these surveillance images to illustrate and emphasise the dichotomy between the observers and those observed.

 Kevin Osepa (b. 1994, Curaçao)

Kevin Osepa is a photographer born and raised on the island of Curaçao. His work revolves around his own identity as well as, in a broader sense, of Afro-Caribbean youth in a post-colonial world. The visuals he creates and the stories he tells are highly influenced by his youth. While the themes he explores are autobiographical, his work can also serve as a quasi-anthropological study.

Image: Altá © Kevin Osepa

 Karolina Wojtas (b. 1996, Poland)

Karolina Wojtas takes a colourful, chaotic approach to the subjects of childhood, education and love in Poland. In her work, images of empty classrooms are interspersed with ones of student activities, learning tools and visualisations of discipline and uniformity that as children we were likely not aware of.

 The five finalists of 2019 will participate in the ING Unseen Talent Programme that challenges emerging artists to explore the boundaries of contemporary photography and take the next step in their career. As part of this programme, they not only receive help from specialists, but also get the opportunity to exchange knowledge with photography professionals and to expand their own network.

ING Unseen Talent Award Jury Members

The international jury responsible for choosing the winner of the ING Unseen Talent Award 2019 includes Mels Crouwel (Architect and Founding Partner, Benthem Crouwel Architects), Emma Lewis (Curator International Art, Tate Modern), Kathy Ryan (Director of Photography, The New York Times Magazine) and Sanne ten Brink (Head Curator, ING Collection). The winner of the jury prize will receive a project fund of €10,000. In addition to this jury prize, there is a public prize awarded that is determined through online voting. The winner of this prize receives a commission for the creation of a new work for the ING Collection.

Photo: ING Unseen Talent Award Ceremony 2018 © Maarten Nauw

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