It’s not everyday you walk into a room to witness the past year’s most beautiful and terrifying moments. And yet, that’s exactly what you get when you visit the World Press Photo Exhibition, which opened in Auckland last weekend.
The exhibition, formed in 1955, showcases photos by professional press photographers from around the world. Changing with each year’s news cycle, there is a certain immediacy to the subjects of the images exhibited each year.
This year, one of the main topics covered by the exhibit is the refugee crisis, including Warren Richardson’s winning World Press Photo of the Year. Richardson’s photograph shows a refugee handing a baby through a barbed wire fence at the border from Serbia into Hungary.
Many of the photos carry this sort of weight. Whether it’s North Korean daily life, sexual assault in the US military, a Syrian man carrying the body of a child killed in an air strike, or a woman documenting her parents’ deaths, there is some heavy shit shown in these images.
It’s an intense experience, but if you can stomach it, the exhibition is a stunning and vital one.
The World Press Photo Exhibition is on at Level 6 of Queen St Smith and Caughey’s until July 24th. Visiting hours can be found here.
A selection of the images on display are as follows:
header: Anuar Patjane Foriuk, Mexico, 2015, Whale Whisperers