Congratulations to Mads Nissen winner of the World Press Photo PICTURE OF THE YEAR. The independent jury of the 2021 Photo Contest selected Mads Nissen’s photograph The First Embrace as the World Press Photo of the Year. In the winning image, Rosa Luzia Lunardi (85) is embraced by nurse Adriana Silva da Costa Souza, at Viva Bem care home, São Paulo, Brazil, on 5 August 2020.
Nissen said about his image: “To me, this is a story about hope and love in the most difficult times. When I learned about the crisis that was unfolding in Brazil and the poor leadership of president Bolsonaro who has been neglecting this virus from the very beginning, who’s been calling it ‘a small flu,’ I really felt an urge to do something about it.”
Kevin WY Lee, photographer, creative director and 2021 Photo Contest jury member describes the winning photograph: “This iconic image of COVID-19 memorializes the most extraordinary moment of our lives, everywhere. I read vulnerability, loved ones, loss and separation, demise, but, importantly, also survival—all rolled into one graphic image. If you look at the image long enough, you’ll see wings: a symbol of flight and hope.”
With his reportage Mads won the 1st Prize in “General News” category.