Ellen Dahl wins the 2024 National Photography Prize

Congratulations to Ellen Dahl, who has won the $30,000 2024 National Photography Prize for her work, Four Days Before Winter.

The winning artwork is a four-part piece from Dahl’s ongoing project Field Notes from the Edge—a series that explores the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard, which is the fastest warming place on earth. It examines the devastating effects of climate change through depictions of the melting terrain. 

“The series Four Days Before Winter brings together multiple aspects of concerns and ideas within my practice,” says Dahl. “Exploring the expanded photographic field to extract a sense of place and affect, geological imagination, time, and how to assemble ecological meaning in the time of climate change. The final work presented in the National Photography Prize is a reflection of all this, and I consider my process a three-way collaboration between the site of Svalbard (and what it chose to reveal right at the cusp of winter), the camera optics and the artist.”

The National Photography Prize was established in 1983, making it Australia’s longest running acquisitive photographic award. This year the judging panel consisted of Nici Cumpston OAM, senior curator at Murray Art Museum Albury Nanette Orl, director of La Trobe Art Institute Bala Starr, and 2022 National Photography Prize winner Tiyan Baker.

“The 2024 National Photography Prize is a dynamic showcase of contemporary photography today,” says judge Nici Cumpston OAM. “I’d like to congratulate all the finalists and thank them for continuing the tradition and evolution of the photographic medium. Congratulations to the overall winner Ellen Dahl for her heartbreakingly beautiful images from the series, Four Days Before Winter, sharing the harsh reality of global warming on the Arctic environment in the Norwegian Archipelago of Svalbard. Congratulations also to Olga Svyatova for winning the John and Margaret Baker Fellowship for their uncanny juxtaposition of archival biological family photographs from Russia, alongside more recent images of their chosen family and friends. The images are quirky and humorous and openly share a sense of humanness across time and place.”

Olga Syvatova won the $5000 John and Margaret Baker Fellowship for their work Они/They. All the finalist’s work will be on display at the Murray Art Museum Albury (MAMA) until September.

2024 National Photography Prize
Murray Art Museum Albury (MAMA)
On now—1 September 

News Words by Art Guide Australia