The winners of the first ever Frank Hurley Photography Awards were recently announced, and a lot of Australian photographers received top accolades. With the exception of the overall competition winner – which was taken by American photographer Jason Gulley – all other categories of the international comp were won by Aussies.
The awards are named after Australian photographer James 'Frank' Hurley (1885–1962), who's best known for his images depicting adventure and exploration, with the Awards' various categories reflecting those themes.
For taking out the top accolade, Florida-based Jason Gulley won an all-expenses paid cruise expedition to Antartica, along with other prizes valued at about AU$20,000, for his winning image entitled Cenote Angelina Cloud taken at the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico.
Jason's image also won the Portrait of Adventure category – one of five categories in the Frank Hurley Photography Awards.
The other categories included Nature and Wildlife, won by South Australian photographer Andrew Dickman with his image entitled Flight of the Penguins and Polar, won by Tasmanian photographer David Sinclair with his image of a polar bear on an ice sheet (pictured above).(opens in new tab)
The Scenic category's top accolade went to Port Macquarie-based photographer Will Eades, with an image of a storm entitled Isolated Cell.(opens in new tab)
There was also a Composition category that was taken out by another NSW-based photographer, Benjamin Maze, with his image called Mutant.(opens in new tab)
The Frank Hurley Photography Awards is the brainchild of the people at Mawson's Huts Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to conserving the buildings of the same name located in Antarctica, where geologist and explorer Sir Douglas Mawson stayed when he led the Australasian Antarctic Expedition between 1911-1914. Hurley accompanied Mawson on the expedition as its official photographer.
The funds raised via the photography competition will go towards preserving the only remaining hut at Cape Denison in East Antarctica, and it's already pulled in a huge amount of international interest in its inaugural year. Thousands of entries were received from 26 countries, with subsequent competitions to be held every alternate year.
All finalist entries are available to view online at the Frank Hurley Photography Awards website (opens in new tab). If you'd like to see them all in person, they are currently displayed at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery in Hobart, and will be there until the end of February 2021.