Wiki Loves Africa competition winners announced

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'My Homeland' won first place in the 2020 Wiki Loves Africa competition (Mohamed Ahmed Yousry)
'My Homeland' won first place in the 2020 Wiki Loves Africa competition (Mohamed Ahmed Yousry)
Mohamed Ahmed Yousry
  • The competition seeks to subvert the stereotypical, monolithic, white gaze on the African continent.
  • Over the last six years, Wiki Loves Africa has seen over 64 000 photographs being added to the Wikimedia Commons. 
  • Every year photographers and videographers are asked to submit work under a theme, this year’s theme was Africa on the Move


The Wiki Loves Africa competition seeks to grant storytellers on the African continent an opportunity to have more of their stories told on an international platform. Both experienced and novice photographers and filmmakers are called to share their world as they see it. 

Submissions made by photographers and videographers then join Wikipedia’s growing collection of royalty free visuals about life on the continent. Over the last six years, Wiki Loves Africa has seen over 64 000 photographs being added to the Wikimedia Commons. 

By giving practitioners on the continent the platform to visualise life in Africa, Wiki Loves Africa looks to subvert stereotypes and the external white-centric gaze that visiting documentarians use to cover life on the continent. 

In a press release Wiki Loves Africa expanded on this saying: 

As a project, Wiki Loves Africa is focused on obliterating the ‘single story of Africa’ by visually displaying the myriad of experiences that make up daily life on the continent.

Originally intended to be open for a month, the sixth leg of the competition’s call for submissions kicked off on 15 February 2020. However this coincided with Covid-19’s arrival on the continent, and as such many countries were under lockdown. The deadline was then extended to 15 April 2020 . 

This year, participants had to adhere to the Africa on the Move theme. Focused on mobility and transport across the continent, the eight week period saw 1904 entrants submitting almost 17000 images and 202 video files. The subjects covered in the entries spanned donkeys, potholed roads, high-speed trains, cargo and ferry boats. 

Once submissions were finalised, an international jury of photographers from the continent and Wikimedia specialists deliberated over the 16982 images. Their criteria was focused on quality, encyclopedia value, an unexpected feature, framing, as well as the images’ ability to keep the viewers attention. 

Bread delivery bicycle (Abd Elhamid Fawzy Abd Elha
Bread delivery bicycle (Abd Elhamid Fawzy Abd Elhamid Tahoun)
Salt Transport by a Camel Train on Lake Assale (Ol
Salt Transport by a Camel Train on Lake Assale (Olivier Siret)
A Mess (Summer Kamal Eldeen Mohamed Farag)
A Mess (Summer Kamal Eldeen Mohamed Farag)


The winners are as follows: 

  • 1st prize: Mohamed Ahmed Yousry for My Homeland (Lake Burullus, Egypt) 
  • 2nd Prize: Abd Elhamid Fawzy Abd Elhamid Tahoun for Bread delivery bicycle (Egypt)
  • 3rd Prize: Summer Kamal Eldeen Mohamed Farag for A Mess 

In addition to the three prizes, the competition has two other prizes.

The first is for an image that represents what Wiki Loves Africa refers to as “ancient traditions within a modern context” for the Traditional Culture Prize. This year the Traditional Culture Prize was awarded to Olivier Siret for Salt Transport by a Camel Train on Lake Assale (Karum) in Ethiopia.

The last prize is for submissions made in the video category. This year the prize was awarded to Aboubacar Kamaté for the mini-documentary Le Transport Lagunaire à Abidjan about a journey on board a Lagoon Ferry. 

To view the winners and hear the stories behind their images, click here

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