The organisers of this year’s Head On Photo Festival have announced the winner and runners-up for the most loved exhibition in the online festival for 2020.

One of the images from Ian Bickerstaff’s collection, ‘Sanctuary’. (© Ian Bickerstaff.)

Ian Bickerstaff’s collection, ‘Sanctuary’ has been voted as the overall winner. The collection of images tells the story a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation centre in Cameroon that provides a safe home in captivity for several hundred primates taken from the wild by illegal hunting activities. Ian has been visiting and documenting the sanctuary that is the subject of this series as a volunteer and photographer for more than 10 years. His pictures capture the relationships between the sanctuary and the wild and explore the relationships between primates and their human caregivers, the sanctuary and the local people, people and wildlife.

The first runner-up was Brett Leigh Dicks with his exhibition Nuclear Landscapes (one image is shown above), which documents topographies across the United States associated with atomic energy. Atomic power was once promoted as the epitome of progress and modernity, but with it came threats of nuclear warfare and disaster. Abandoned uranium mining towns, decaying atomic test sites, old nuclear reactors, and decommissioned nuclear missile bases now stand as an eerie testament to a time that was meant to revolutionise civilisation.

One of the images from Kasper Forest’s Inevitable Conflict collection. (© Kasper Forest.)

The second runner-up was Kasper Forest with Inevitable Conflict, a project created to express the dilemmas faced by modern Asian society. Born in Hong Kong in the 1980s, Kasper frequently experienced what he saw as the contradictions between Hong Kongers and Chinese identities in the city, demonstrating a sense of confusion and anxiety about the future. Kasper uses photography to record the dualities of the city, rich and poor, modernity and discrimination.

Ian has won a prize valued at $2848, which includes an Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III and a M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-150mm F4.0-5.6 II. One lucky voter will be privately notified they have won an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III Single Lens Kit (14-42mm EZ Lens). Both prizes were provided by Olympus Australia, a major sponsor of Head On.

This year’s festival, which was the first photo festival to go entirely online, included 111 exhibitions and 82 events and attracted more than 80,000 visits from 147 countries. Click here to view the Head On online exhibitions.