Agnieszka Rayss, photographer, freelancer. Her area of work is documentary photography. She studied art history at the Jagiellonian University. Co-founder of the Sputnik Photos International Association of Photojournalists (www.sputnikphotos.com).
A two-time winner of the Picture of the Year award in 2011 and 2012, a two-time finalist in the Hasselblad Masters Award, winner of press photography competitions, including Newsreporta? and Grand Press Photo. Recipient of a scholarship from the Ministry of Culture in 2012 and from the Visegrad Fund in 2007.
She published the album “American Dream” (about cultural transformation and the triumph of pop culture in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe). She took part in several individual and group exhibitions, including the Prague Biennale 2009 and the Noorderlicht Photofestival 2008 and 2009.
She is interested in how post-communist countries try to copy western trends, as well as the pop cultural manifestations of the transformation. Her work has appeared in magazines such as Newsweek, The Guardian, and other). In recent years she has also worked on landscape as well as topics related to ecology.
A quarter century after the fall of the Soviet Union, the Empire's shadow continues to be felt across Europe and Asia—five photographers offer their views on this continually relevant topic.
In addition to the six top winners, 25 remarkable international photographers have garnered special praise by the jury this year.
Portraits of women veterans of World War II in Belarus —former teenage soldiers, now in their 90s.