This year’s winners have just been announced for the renowned Leica Oskar Barnack Awards (LOBA). Luca Locatelli, whose series ‘Future Studies’ was submitted by nominator Alicia Gabriner, won over the five-person jury and took out the main category, while the Newcomer award went to Portuguese photographer Gonçalo Fonseca for his New Lisbon series, submitted by nominator Silvia Omedes.
Born in Italy in 1971, Luca Locatelli worked as a software developer before starting a career in documentary photography in 2006. A National Geographic photographer since 2015, his work has been published in the New York Times Magazine, Bloomberg, Wired, The New Yorker and more. “Future Studies” is Locatelli’s long-term project which looks into new ways for our future survival on Planet Earth and how to deal with environmental problems. His winning work includes imagery from shut-down nuclear power plants, port facilities, and a wind park in the North Sea, focusing on the theme of energy turnaround and the future of food production. “My aim through this project is to present the viewer with a debate regarding our concept of growth and our relationship with nature and technology,” Locatelli explains.
The LOBA Newcomer award is open to photographers under 30. Gonçalo Fonseca was born in Lisbon in 1993 and completed his post-graduate studies in Photojournalism after studying Journalism at the Catholic University of Lisbon, and has worked in Spain, Portugal, China and India for various international publications. His “New Lisbon” series focuses on the dramatic housing situation affecting Lisbon and reveals the consequences of advancing gentrification via individuals’ stories. As Lisbon becomes one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe, the housing market has changed rapidly, with rent rising steadily and houses being sold and renovated into holiday apartments. This has resulted in over 10,000 tenants losing their homes without being offered any alternative. Fonseca is continuing the series and is still following the processes of change and displacement happening in his home city.