Dubai photographer up for international award

Gravel Quarry, Hatta. Courtesy: Richard Allenby-Pratt
Gravel Quarry, Hatta. Courtesy: Richard Allenby-Pratt

A Dubai-based photographer has been shortlisted for a photography award hosted by Syngenta, an international biotechnology company aimed at raising awareness about global environmental issues.

Richard Allenby-Pratt is one of three photographers up for the US$40,000 first prize, which includes a $25,000 commission. His work is in the professional category of the award, which also has an open category for non-professionals.

His nomination comes for his latest project Consumption, which explores aspects of the supply chain associated with the modern consumer; from the extraction of resources, to processing, manufacturing, energy production, construction, food production, logistics and retail, through to waste management and reuse.

Allenby-Pratt is also known for his 2011 Abandoned project that was included in group exhibitions in the UAE and in the US as well as in a wonderful solo show at The Shelter in 2012, which focused on his series of wild animals roaming over his landscapes in a post-apocalyptic bleakness.

The 10 images submitted for this show fit cohesively with the theme of the competition – Scarcity/Waste – as does his general practice as an artist.

“I find myself looking at the way the natural, ancient, landscape of the UAE is being utilised and consumed,” he says in his artist’s statement. “The exponential development of the Emirati landscape and rapid depletion of its resources has been an illustration of the speed at which natural resources are consumed and environments damaged, when economic growth is unrestrained.”

Also in the shortlist is Mustafah Abdulaziz, an American who was one of the first contracted photographers for the Wall Street Journal and Rasel Chowdhury, a Bangladeshi documentary photographer.

The winners will be announced at an award ceremony in March next year, and an accompanying exhibition curated by Candlestar will be on view at Somerset House in London from March 11 until April 10.

* To see more of Richard’s work visit

Published: November 25, 2014 04:00 AM