The Prix Pictet is an international award in photography and sustainability. It was founded in 2008 by the Geneva private bank Banque Pictet & Cie SA. The mandate of the award is to use the power of photography to communicate messages about sustainability to a global audience. Its goal is to uncover photographic art of the highest order, applied to the social and environmental challenges of the new millennium. The prize is judged by an independent jury and carries a prize of CHF 100,000. There is also a Commission, in which a nominated photographer is invited to undertake a field trip to document a sustainability project.
Entry to the Prix Pictet is by nomination. As of February 2013, there were over 200 Prix Pictet nominators, a group of industry experts from around the world consisting of internationally respected photographers, gallerists, agency heads, academics, authors, publishers, curators, photography foundation and other such members. Each nominated photographer is asked to provide a series of pictures coherently defined, focused on the theme of the award and limited to ten images.
The judges do not discriminate between photographs of different genres, nor do they make assumptions about the types of audience for any class of photograph. After arriving at a shortlist of 12 portfolios, the Jury make their final decision in a gallery setting. The winner of the Prix Pictet receives a cash prize of CHF100,000, announced at an opening ceremony of the exhibition of shortlisted artists. The second element of the prize is a Commission, awarded to one of the nominated photographers, not necessarily shortlisted, at the discretion of Pictet. The Commission is related to a sustainability project supported by Pictet.
The pictures chosen by the judges travel the world for a year in a major exhibition.
The Prix Pictet was first awarded in 2008 and operates on an approximately 18-month cycle. Past cycles were Water, Earth, Growth and Power. The theme of the fifth cycle will be Consumption. From May 2014 the prize is to be presented in partnership with the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.
Themes and Winners
- 2008: Water - Benoit Aquin
- 2009: Earth - Nadav Kander
- 2011: Growth - Mitch Epstein
- 2012: Power - Luc Delahaye
- 2014: Consumption
- The Financial Times
- The Guardian
- O'Hagan, Sean (2012-07-04). "Prix Pictet shortlist open the shutters on power". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-09-07.
- Official website
- Power: Prix Pictet 2012 Shortlist
- BBB News Live, Audio Slide Show
- CNN, 3.11.08, Images of China win new photo award
- The Telegraph, 12.11.08, Benjamin Secher, The inaugural Prix Pictet: Kofi Annan and the elemental power of the image
- Financial Times, 01.11.08, Jan Dalley, "The First Prix Pictet"
- Financial Times, 10.03.09, Angel Gurría-Quintana, "Photography caught amid sea and swamp"