World Press Photography Competition 2013, Royal Festival Hall , Southbank Two uncles carry their dead nephews in their arms, followed by an army of angry villagers, desperate for justice. A dead body of a suspected collaborator is dragged through the streets of Gaza City. The corpse of a Sudan Armed Forces soldier floats in an oily pond after a clash with the Sudan People’s Liberation Army. Looking at these harrowing photos it can be hard to believe that they are images of real life. And even harder to think there is someone one the other side of the camera, risking their life at times, taking the shot. The competition contains a combination of portraits, character studies, daily life, news and nature. But the majority seem to fall in the contemporary issues category, demonstrating conflicts of war, drugs, gangs and death. The exhibition comes with a warning for a reason. How the judges narrowed over 100,000 photos into this 55 exhibition amazes me, but it is clear why they are chosen. Though there are some strange additions, like the Danish photographer’s depiction of his family life on holiday in Italy, falling into the Daily Life category. His naked wife sits on the toilet yawning while a toddler rifles through the bin next to her. Another child is asleep in the next room. I’m not sure I’d be happy if I was her. The gallery has two separate sections which left it feeling slightly disjointed and would be easy to miss one whole part of the exhibition entirely. However, each photo is well annotated with just enough description of the event to draw the viewer into the scene without boring them. If you are of a nervous disposition, are already feeling depressed or emotional and have diminished faith in humanity- I would not visit. It is not an uplifting or ‘fun’ exhibition- but it will make you appreciate your own safe bubble of life. And make you want to buy a decent camera.
Top 10 photography exhibitions in London
Discover a world beyond Instagram at the city's best current and upcoming photography shows
London's cultural menu doesn't start and finish with paint on canvas – experience a whole new world of artistic awesomeness at these blockbuster photography exhibitions, taking place at venues including The Photographers' Gallery and Getty Images Gallery.
© Dennis Hopper, courtesy The Hopper Art Trust. www.dennishopper.com
© Gered Mankowitz
Kate Bush: Photographs by Gered Mankowitz and Guido Harari
These two photographers are cheekily bringing out new Bush books and putting on an exhibition to coincide with the ‘Before the Dawn’ shows. Big draws include Mankowitz’s famous ‘pink leotard’ shots and out-takes from his shoots for the ‘Lionheart’ and ‘The Kick Inside’ sleeves. Go along and play ‘Hounds of Love’ on your phone: it’ll almost be like Kate’s singing to you. Until you get kicked out of the gallery.
© Joan Fontcuberta
© The Estate of Carlo Mollino
© Lorenzo Vitturi
© Tim Hetherington, Courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery, New York and Magnum.
Tim Hetherington: Infidel
The late photojournalist’s images and videos capture individual perspectives of war, both military and civilian. Infedel, a series of large-scale images were taken in the Korengal Valley, Afghanistan between 2007-2008 when Hetherington managed to get close to the American soldiers stationed there. Counterbalancing these is Hetherington’s short film Diary, a personal reflection on his experiences of reporting on world affairs.
© George P Lewis
Traces of War
A hundred years after the beginning of WWI, the Fleming Collection is exhibiting works by two Scottish photographers. Peter Cattrell’s landscape pieces of Somme have a dual focus on the devastation of war and the serenity of nature’s renewal. On loan from the Scottish National Portrait Gallery is a series by George P Lewis about the role of women in transport and heavy industries during wartime in Scotland.
© Danny Lyon dektol.wordpress.com Courtesy of Etherton Gallery, Tucson, U.S.A. and Atlas Gallery, London
Bello e interessante! Anche la traduzione in Italiano è migliore della media. Bravi, complimenti. Saluti e auguri. From Brescia, Italy
There is fantastic exhibition of the ARENA GROUP of photographers at the Menier gallery, Southwark, Opened yesterday. Very moving & beautiful.
The Contemporary Art Society, based in Clerkenwell, is putting on a show by John Stezaker, Deutsche Borse 2012 winner, from 4 September. Not to be missed!
Find a new picture perfect favourite with our guide to London photography
Get in the picture with our guide to London's best galleries to visit and buy photography from