Two members of Arts University Bournemouth (AUB)’s photographic community have been named as winners in this year’s Portrait of Britain competition.
Akindele Ibukun, currently studying MA Photography at AUB, was among the 100 winners selected. He described his nomination as “the pinnacle of [his] photography journey.”
Now having won, he says: “Some emotions defy expression, and this experience was undeniably one of them.
“Beyond being a reflection of the passion and dedication invested in my work, along with the unwavering support received during the MA course, achieving this milestone in less than a year is a profoundly humbling moment for me.”
Akindele’s portrait comes from a project that focuses on Afrocentrism and Eurocentrism through fashion.
MA Photography course leader Professor Paul Wenham-Clarke was also selected as a winner this year, with a portrait from his series There is no grief without love.
This series formed part of Paul’s exhibition When Lives Collide, shown at the OXO Gallery in London in January 2023 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the charity Roadpeace.
“It’s wonderful to have my image in this national exhibition across numerous busy public spaces, such as shopping malls and train stations,” says Paul. “It’s an opportunity to show the public photographic works that are not advertising-based, which can communicate important messages about society.
“My image shows Mark, a man that has struggled with tremendous feelings of grief after losing his son in a motorbike crash. The image says, we must release our grief to recover.”
As winners of the competition, Akindele and Paul’s portraits will feature in the final Portrait of Britain publication and will also be shown on digital advertising screens for a month.
AUB Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Gough comments: “Photography has always been one of the distinct strengths at Arts University Bournemouth. These latest successes are proof of the highest quality of our staff and student photographers, and we are very proud of their achievements in this very competitive field of work.”
In addition to these two wins, three other AUB students and alumni received nominations – current BA (Hons) Commercial Photography students Nick Teo and Jacob Cramp, and MA Photography alumna Lisa Doyle.
Their images are included among the 200 shortlistees on the British Journal of Photography’s website