On 15.07.2021, the city of Hagen and the surrounding area were hit by the flood of the century. Flooded cellars, flooded streets, torrential streams carrying masses of debris and burying cars underneath them left the city in chaos. Even the emergency services had to surrender in some places. Those who see photos of the flood disaster in Hagen often see suffering, but also a lot of hope, solidarity and unconditional help.
Capturing these moments was the photo competition theme for the students of the EF level of the upper school of the Hohenlimburger Gymnasium, which was organised in cooperation with the art teachers of the school and the Germany Chapter.
The chapter's main aim was to deal with the consequences of the flood disaster and perhaps also to overcome them. 61 pupils took part in the photo competition. For this, the students could work as individuals or in groups of between two and four students. A total of 65 photographs were submitted.
The ten best photos were selected by an expert jury consisting of Chairman Siegfried Rubbert, Chapter Secretary Horst Witthueser, Treasurer Eberhard Potempa, Chapter Organiser Chris Renk and art teacher Lena Lumberg. Students from the other year groups (Q1 and Q2) could also apply to open the competition to more young people from the school.
For each of the submitted pictures, the participants had to submit a "Statement of Intent", in which they had to explain why they had chosen these particular motifs. The submitted images showed great diversity in approach. Pictures were presented in the form of before/after documentation, documentation during the flood, and documentation after the flood. One group even recreated a disaster picture.
The award ceremony for the winning photos and the "shortlisted" photos (4th to 10th place) took place in the grammar school auditorium as a presentation event. Prizes included book vouchers for the first three photos and a certificate for each of the ten places.
▲ 1st Place by Jola
▲ 2nd Place by Jaqueline & Simona
▲ 3rd Place by Dominik, Kai & Jakub
For more information about the photo competition and the participating photos, please visit the dedicated photo book on the ISSUU platform of the Royal Photographic Society.
Thanks to the positive feedback, the Germany Chapter is planning further photo projects with the Hohenlimburg Gymnasium in the future.