"Finding Freedom in the Water” By Anna Boyiazis
Kijini Primary School students learn to float, swim, and perform rescues on Oct. 25, 2016 in the Indian Ocean off of Muyuni, Zanzibar © Anna Boyiazis

 “Project 562:Pandemic Portraits and Stories from Native Youth” By Matika Wilbur
Virginia Christman is a Kumeyaay grandma, mother of Takko Christman, who is a leader of the prominent Bird Dancing family © Matika Wilbur

“The Super Power of Me” By Karen Zusman
Kris, lives in Sheepshead Bay © Karen Zusman


The Leica Women Foto Project is pleased to announce the recipients of the second annual Leica Women Foto Project Award. This prestigious award is a part of the Leica Women Foto Project, an ongoing commitment to diversity in visual storytelling to help empower the female point of view through photography.

The mission of the Leica Women Foto Project is to encourage and empower photographers to demonstrate the importance and impact of a female's point of view. The award serves as a catalyst to re-frame how we see, how we think, and how we express our visual narrative.

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Finding Freedom in the Water By Anna Boyiazis bears witness to women and girls in Zanzibar learning to swim, an act of emancipation. This proposal focuses on an in-depth, visual narrative of these women and girls, revealing the broader and the more intimate context of their daily lives.
Instagram: @AnnaBoyiazis
Facebook: Anna Boyiazis
Website: www.annaboyiazis.com 

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Project 562 By Matika Wilbur is a visual narrative of Tribal sovereignties in the US, covering over 400 Tribal Nations in all 50 states to “change the way we see Native America”. Matika’s extraordinary creative initiative and singular body of work began after a dream with her grandmother, who asked her to photograph their own peoples. Matika honors her ancestor by portraying the richness and diversity of lived experiences of Indian Country with bold and inspired creativity.
Instagram: @Project562
Facebook: @Project562
Website: matikawilbur.com

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The Super Power of Me By Karen Zusman project celebrates young lives of color and immigrants with a portrait series that shows who they are before the world tells them otherwise. It consists of an outdoor exhibit and creativity workshops that help express, protect and share with the world their vision of who they are.
Instagram: @kzusman
Facebook: @Karen.Zusman
Website: www.kz-photo.com

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The projects submitted by Matika Wilbur, Karen Zusman and Anna Boyiazis were carefully selected by nine influential women in photography, art and journalism, which include:
+ Karin Rehn-Kaufmann, Art Director & Chief Representative, Leica Galleries International
+ Amanda de Cadenet, Entrepreneur, journalist, author, photographer, activist and found of   Girlgaze & The Conversation
+ Laura Roumanos, Executive producer and co-founder, United Photo Industries and Photoville
+ Sheila Pree Bright, Fine-art photographer and visual cultural producer
+ Elizabeth Avedon, Independent curator, photo consultant, designer and writer
+ Elizabeth Krist, National Geographic photo editor and founding member of the Visual Thinking Collective
+ Lynn Johnson, Photographer and National Geographic contributor
+ Maggie Steber, VII Agency photographer and Guggenheim Grant Fellow
+ Sandra Stevenson, Assistant Editor in the photography department at The New York Times
In addition to the $10,000 award, recipients will each receive a Leica Q2, a fixed-lens compact camera with a rangefinder-style electronic viewfinder that produces unparalleled high-quality images. 
Designed with a weather-sealed body and crafted to last a lifetime, the Leica Q2 cameras will be gifted to this year's award recipients: Matika Wilbur, Karen Zusman and Anna Boyiazis so they can continue their groundbreaking work for years to come. 
To further elevate the voices of these female award recipients and their diverse photographic subjects, the new awardees will also be offered opportunities to participate in Leica Gallery exhibitions and Leica Akademie workshops as well as receive mentorship from notable photographers in the industry.


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