Gauri Gill wins tenth Prix Pictet

Gauri Gill wins tenth Prix Pictet

Gauri Gill received the title and 100,000 Swiss Francs (90,000 GBP) at an award ceremony at V&A Museum in London on 28 September.

Indian photographer Gauri Gill was announced this evening, Thursday 28 September, as the winner of the tenth cycle of the Prix Pictet, the global award for photography and sustainability receiving the prize of 100,000 Swiss Francs. Gauri Gill was selected from a shortlist of 12 photographers by an independent jury.

Gill’s work emphasises her belief in working with and through community, in what she calls ‘active listening’. For more than two decades, she has been engaged closely with marginalised communities in the desert of western Rajasthan, and for the last decade with Indigenous artists in Maharashtra. 

Her winning series ‘Notes from the Desert’ looks at whole spectrum of life: drought years and the year of a great monsoon - when Barmer became Kashmir.

See all Gauri's artworks

Hanuman Nath with His Daughter and Hem Nath, on Holi Day, Lunkaransar, 1999-ongoing

Government Hospital, Barmer (3), 1999-ongoing

On my many visits to rural Rajasthan, I have witnessed a complex reality I knew nothing about as a city dweller. To live poor and landless in the desert amounts to an inescapable reliance on oneself, on each other, and on nature. These fragments of shared experience now inhabit a large photographic archive called Notes from the Desert, encompassing different narratives and varied forms of image making.
Gauri Gill

Urma and Nimli, Lunkaransar, 1999-ongoing

In a world facing unprecedented challenges, from social inequality to environmental crises, it was crucial to turn the lens towards humanity itself. The theme "Human" which we announced in July 2022, already provides a platform to explore the complexities, vulnerabilities, and strengths of the human condition. It allows the artists to capture and communicate the stories, struggles, and triumphs of individuals and communities around the globe. Through this theme, Prix Pictet aims to foster a deeper understanding of our shared humanity and inspire meaningful conversations about the issues that impact us all. Especially when thinking about the theme Human, I strongly believe that instead of the future of photography, we should think about photography for the future. The power of the image lies in its ability to foreground critical and urgent environmental issues in a visually impactful yet direct way.
Isabelle von Ribbentrop, Executive Director of Prix Pictet

Jogiyon ka Dera, Lunkaransar, 1999-ongoing

As the Prix Pictet marks its tenth cycle, the choice of Human for the theme signifies a reflection on the journey thus far. It encapsulates the evolution of the prize, acknowledging the central role of humanity in shaping the sustainability discourse. The jury considered an exceptional group of visual storytellers, each of whom demonstrate a highly distinctive approach to the theme. This led to a rich debate amongst the jury before their unanimous decision that Gauri Gill was a worthy winner of Prix Pictet Human.
Renaud de Planta, Pictet’s Senior Managing Partner

To accompany the exhibition, Hatje Cantz have published Human, a book featuring the shortlisted photographers together with a selection of outstanding images from a  wider group of those nominated for the award. The publication also features essays by the historian David Christian and writer Meehan Crist and a special interview with  photographer Sebastião Salgado, the great champion of humanitarian photography, by Michael Benson, the Director of the Prix Pictet.

During the award ceremony, Prix Pictet also announced the launch of a new initiative, the Prix Pictet People’s Choice Award. The Award allows the public to vote for their favourite shortlisted series, and seeks to create dialogue around the vital issues the  prize explores. The winner of the People’s Choice Award will be announced at the close of the exhibition. Voting is cast online via Prix Pictet’s website.

Following its time at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the exhibition will embark on a  global tour during which it will be shown at leading museums in Zürich, Istanbul,  Dublin, Bangkok, Munich, San Diego, Singapore and Stockholm.