Argentinean press photographer was the big winner – twice!
The winners in the new International photo contest The PGB Photo Award received their awards today at Lydmar Hotel in Stockholm, Sweden. The Picture of the Year award went to Walter Astrada from Argentina. He was also crowned Photographer of the Year.

Walter Astrada from the news agency AFP was today’s most celebrated photographer at the awards ceremony held at Lydmar Hotel. The Argentinean took home first prize in the contest’s two major categories, Picture of the Year and Photographer of the Year. He also managed to catch second prize in the category News Picture of the Year. The prize amount for the two highest distinctions added up to $20,000, about 180.000 SEK.

It’s absolutely fantastic! I’m extremely proud of these prizes and also very happy that my pictures now will reach a totally different public through The PGB Photo Award.  It feels really great! -says Walter Astrada.

The 34 year old photographer is based in Kampala, Uganda. His winning entries included one picture of the violence in Kenya and a picture story on sexual violence against women in Congo. The winning pictures in the contest’s twelve categories were chosen among 6,000 entries. All entries were carefully studied by The PGB Photo Award’s International jury.

-This was the first year we ran the contest and I’m overwhelmed by the response. We have received entries from over 70 countries all over the world.  Many have applauded us for the idea of giving back to those who so often become the subjects for us photographers; exposed people in the poorest countries, says Jonas Lemberg, founder of The PGB Photo Award.

Which project, or projects will receive this year’s donation will be announced in the near future. The money is a portion of sponsor contributions, any surplus from the contest, and voluntary gifts. At least $5,000 will be donated this first year.

An exhibition from March 8 through May 8 at Lydmar Hotel displays the winning pictures in all twelve categories. All of the winning pictures are also published in The PGB Photo Book released in bookstores today.

The winning pictures can be downloaded from www.thepgbphotoaward.com under the heading "press", then "downloads".