Nikol Macoszková, a student of the Department of Art Education at the Faculty of Education at Palacky University, was awarded the Czech Press Photo for her series of photographs entitled Cult of the Body. She won the award in the Canon Junior Award category.
The twenty-eighth year of the prestigious Czech Press Photo competition has its winners. Their names were announced at the end of January during a ceremony at the National Museum, where Nikol Macoszková, a student of the Faculty of Education of the Palacky University, received the Canon Junior Award. She won the award for a set of images that make her think about the over-effort of striving for a perfectly athletic body.
"I am very happy about the award. It is a motivation and an opportunity for me to move forward in my work," said Nikol Macoszková. Although she has been studying photography at Palacky University for the fourth year, she says that she started to pay more attention to it only in her bachelor's thesis, of which the award-winning images are a part of. The photographic collection, entitled Cult of the Body, deals with contemporary society, in which more and more emphasis is placed on a person's physical appearance, which can be to the detriment of the perception of their personality.
"I have chosen prominent examples of top female competitors in the modern sport of Bikini fitness, which is based on the pursuit of physical perfection, even with the support of often underwhelming fashion accessories. Young female competitors become 'beauty ideals' and can influence others in both positive and negative ways," the award-winning student described her series of photographs, consisting of double portraits of female athletes in a prescribed racing pose and in their natural home environment. She emphasized the great help of Svatopluk Klesnil, who supervised her bachelor's thesis and who was the one who started the idea of sending the pictures to the competition.
"Nikol has chosen a topic with a social significance, but from the point of view of photography it is hardly elaborated. She did a very good job with her passion for the subject. I am also glad that she listened to me and sent the images to the competition. She also sent the photographs to the Slovak Press Photo competition, where she also succeeded. Her work was evaluated as one of the two best in the international category of young photographers up to 26 years of age from seven countries of Central and Eastern Europe," added Svatopluk Klesnil from the Department of Art Education of the Palacky University.
The twenty-eighth edition of the Czech Press Photo competition was attended by 234 photographers. You can read more here and here.