Cape Town - It was the realisation of a lifetime goal for multiple award-winning photographer Phandulwazi Jikelo to have his Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest winning image exhibited in Cape Town and around the world.
The Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest is organised by the Rossiya Segodnya media group under the aegis of the Commission of the Russian Federation for Unesco.
Jikelo’s work, along with other category winners in the competition, is on display at the Eclectica Contemporary at 69 Burg Street in the city centre until Sunday. The photographs have already been exhibited in cities such as Shanghai and Madrid.
“I feel really great to know my work is being exhibited internationally. It shows the standard of work people are producing in South Africa. We just have to keep that up and work harder,” he said.
Jikelo, 33, originally from the Eastern Cape, moved to Khayelitsha at the age of 10.
This is his seventh award in three years.
“The Stenin Contest meant a lot to me. To have an opportunity to enter international competition and be a winner in one of the categories was a highlight of my career. To be the first African to win this competition, just changed my life. It is something I have never thought of. What I appreciated more is the exposure it gives to young photographers. I hope I grows even bigger from here," he said.
The Consul-General of the Russian Federation in Cape Town, Roman Ambarov, said the winning images were “sincere moments” captured.
“The reality of the moment is what we value the most. Cape Town is one of the most wonderful cities in the world,” he said.
Ambarov added: “Modern technologies make it possible for us to take millions of photos daily; however, this is not enough to become a photojournalist. Representatives of this profession do not only have talent and work hard, but are also brave and selfless – this is what Russian photojournalist Andrei Stenin was like, and hence the annual contest of Rossiya Segodnya is named after him."
Jikelo’s work, produced while on the Cape Times staff before his transfer to African News Agency (ANA), was selected from 5 000 entries from 76 countries.
Others from Africa have been recognised this year, including Kevin Midigo from Kenya, who won second prize in the Top News category for his Anti-IEBC Protests (the Kenyan Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission).
The second South African venue for the exhibition will be the Market Photo Workshop in Johannesburg on November 15.
Cape Times and IOL