Announcing the six selected talents from the Europe 6x6 Global Talent Program

The 6x6 Global Talent Program spotlights six talents, from six global regions, in a rolling process of nomination and selection.

By connecting under-recognized visual storytellers to a global audience, the initiative aims to encourage diverse accounts of the world that present stories with different perspectives.

Now halfway through its first cycle, with three of the six global regions’ talents announced, the 6x6 Program will present work by the six European talents at LUMIX Festival for Young Photojournalism in Hannover, Germany from 20 - 24 June. This first exhibition of the 6x6 Program will showcase a selection from the portfolios of each of the 18 selected talents announced so far. This is part of a continued effort to support and develop opportunities for the 6x6 talents.

Nominations for visual storytellers from the global region of Europe were made by our growing community of over 100 global nominators. The following six talented visual storytellers from Europe were selected from more than 95 nominations:

  • Álvaro Laiz, Spain
  • Ann Sophie Lindström, Luxembourg
  • Emile Ducke, Germany
  • Esa Ylijaasko, Finland
  • Marie Hald, Denmark
  • Santi Palacios, Spain

With Lars Boering, Managing Director of the World Press Photo Foundation, as chair, the online selection committee comprised of:

  • Daria Scolamacchia, Italy, photo editor
  • Sigrid Nygaard, Denmark, photo editor and photographer
  • Rafal Milach, Poland, visual artist, photographer and author
  • Maria Mann, USA, consultant international relations EPA

On nominating Álvaro Laiz, Ruth Eichhorn, Germany, freelance photo editor and curator said:

“Álvaro Laiz has found his unique way of expressing himself by concentrating on the complex relationship between man and nature, shifting between conflict and fascination. He tries to focus on realities that are usually ignored by the mass media. Every image is like a poem with a structure, and just like a poem, his images compress an emotional experience.”

On nominating Ann Sophie Lindström, Uwe H. Martin, Germany, photographer and producer Bombay Flying Club said:

“Ann Sophie Lindström is one of the most interesting upcoming visual storytellers today, whose projects bridge photography and moving image documentary. Her current film, ‘The Bitter with the Sweet’, takes the intimacy, obvious in all of Ann Sophie's work, to the next level.”

On nominating Emile Ducke, Ruth Eichhorn, Germany, freelance photo editor and curator said:

“Emile Ducke’s innovative, exciting use of photography is surprising and genuine. He often works with a middle format camera and waits for the right situation to develop, making his photographs compellingly intimate.”

On nominating Esa Ylijaasko, - Sebastián Liste, Spain, photographer said:

“When I first met Esa Ylijaasko, I realized immediately that he had a different voice, a unique way of seeing the world and telling stories with images. The perseverance, patience and tenderness of his approach are rare gems in this industry, and he is devoted to continuing to do it.”

On nominating Marie Hald, Søren Pagter, Denmark, photojournalism department head The Danish School of Media and Journalism said:

“Marie Hald is working thoroughly with projects about women and their relationship to beauty and the female body. Her work is very intimate and personal, both with reportage stories and portraits. Even though she has received prizes and her work has been published and exhibited, she deserves a larger recognition for her work focusing on important gender issues.”

On nominating Santi Palacios, Daniel Ochoa de Olza, Spain, photographer said:

“Santi Palacios’ commitment to his work - to the story of migration - is something rarely seen. He has been constantly on the field during the past years producing a stunning body of work, both visually and journastically. The combinations of investigation, his sociological background, field work, visual skills, global perspective and commitment has made of him one of the best European photojournalists to watch.”

In addition to the exhibition, the work of the six talents will also be published and shared on the World Press Photo Foundation’s platforms, including an individual feature on Witness for each of the talents.

See the results of the South America edition announced in March 2018, as well as the 6x6 Program’s inaugural edition in Southeast Asia and Oceania announced in November 2017.

6x6 Global Talent Program: Africa

The next edition of the 6x6 Global Talent Program, Africa, will open for nominations by the end of June.

World Press Photo is actively seeking suggestions or applications for nominators. To apply to be a global nominator, and for all questions about the program, please contact Thera Vermeij, 6x6 Global Talent Program Project Manager, at


Header image, from left to right, top to bottom: Marie Hald (© Katinka Hustad), Emile Ducke (© Tamina-Florentine Zuch), Álvaro Laiz (© Andrea Santolaya), Esa Ylijaasko (© Iida Liimatainen), Santi Palacios (© Santi Palacios), and Ann Sophie Lindström (© Rafael Heygster).