RABO PHOTOGRAPHIC PORTRAIT PRIZE
All Winners

Sarah Mei Herman

Winner Rabo Photographic Portrait Prize 2018

Sarah Mei Herman (1980), Julian & Jonathan, 2017

The jury report on Sarah Mei Herman’s winning portrait:
‘In principle, a double portrait is complicated. Is it actually a portrait? After all, this is not about a single person. Your eyes constantly go from one to the other. Yet everything comes together in this picture. The photo is subdued, the timing is exceptional. It is clear that this picture is about the mutual relationship between the two people portrayed. The photo calls for an insight into the relationship between these people. The tension between both is palpable. The photographer also plays an emphatic role and squeezes, as it were, herself between them. This creates a triangle relationship in which everyone has taken their position. The father looks towards the camera, the photographer’s half-brother looks away. Ultimately, there was the photographer who observed and ruthlessly captured the situation. The light and the view that you are granted through the net curtain reinforce the confrontation. In a time of superficial scanning and quick judgment, this is a portrait that invites you to look closer.’

Jury: Philippien Noordam (chair, Head of Art Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs); Bart Rutten (Creative director Centraal Museum, Utrecht); Jitske Schols (winner Dutch Photographic Portrait Prize 2016); Koos Breukel (portrait photographer and curator); Narda van ‘t Veer (Van Ravesteijn Gallery / UNIT) and Sabine Verschueren (art director).

Peggy Kuiper

Winner Rabo Photographic Portrait Talent 2018

Peggy Kuiper (1986), Dio, 2017

The jury on the series of winner Peggy Kuiper:
‘(…) fresh, straightforward and convincing. It is clearly a pre-conceived composition that did not come about by chance. The colours, shapes and rhythm of the photos are carefully coordinated. This makes the series quite peppy. The strong graphic character of the photo is striking – it thus seems to move away from a traditional portrait. Peggy Kuiper has a graphic background, which explains a lot.’

Jury: Philippien Noordam (chair, Head of Art Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs); Bart Rutten (Creative director Centraal Museum, Utrecht); Jitske Schols (winner Dutch Photographic Portrait Prize 2016); Koos Breukel (portrait photographer and curator); Narda van ‘t Veer (Van Ravesteijn Gallery / UNIT) and Sabine Verschueren (art director).

Jitske Schols

Winner Photographic Portrait Prize 2016

Jitske Schols (1969), Sora in Black, 2016

From the jury’s report: ‘In a short time, Jitske Schols has built an impressive body of work, for which she received international recognition. She has developed her own signature in her portraits. The winning portrait is part of Schols’s series of children who have a Dutch parent and a parent with a foreign nationality. Sora is a half-Moluccan girl. The viewer’s attention is drawn to her face, as this is the only part of the image that reflects the light. Her gaze is elusive, you cannot reach it, and therefore you keep looking. It is a timeless image; dark, but with just enough detail. The shape of the arms repeats the shape of the hair. This portrait is cinematic and mysterious.’

Jury: Saskia Asser (curator Rijksmuseum and Huis Marseille, Amsterdam); Koos Breukel (portrait photographer and curator); Hedy van Erp (photo historian, author and curator); Philippien Noordam (Head of Art Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs); Sander Troelstra (winner Photographic Portrait Prize 2015); Narda van ‘t Veer (Van Ravesteijn Gallery / UNIT) and Sabine Verschueren (art director)

Winner Photographic Portrait Prize 2015

Sander Troelstra

Sander Troelstra (1976), Ben Augustus, 2015

From the jury’s report: ‘Troelstra is an inspired photographer with his own signature. His portrait of Ben Augustus is part of a series from which more than one was eligible for a nomination. The picture shows no false sentiments. We see a nice man, in his own world, but aware of his connection to the photographer. Life as it is – which is applicable to all of Troelstra’s work.’

Jury: Koos Breukel, Rineke Dijkstra, Hedy van Erp, Philippien Noordam, Annaleen Louwes, Robin de Puy, Erik Schilp

Gerard Wessel

Winner Nationale Portetprijs 2014

Gerard Wessel (1960), Katja Schuurman, 2014

From the jury’s report: ‘Gerard Wessel has been out of sight for ten years, but came back this year with a beautiful black and white portrait series. It is highly admirable that after such a long time of public absence, Wessel has made an extremely interesting portrait. This prize also applies as an acknowledgment of his achievements in Dutch photography. ‘

Jury: Wim van Sinderen, Theo Audenaerd, Erik Schilp, Koos Breukel, Narda van ‘t Veer.

Robin de Puy

Winner Nationale Portretrijs 2013

Robin de Puy (1986), An-Sofie Kesteleyn, 2013.

From the jury’s report: ‘The fact that Robin de Puy has been nominated this year with two portraits proves that she is highly skilled in terms of portrait styles. Her portrait of Eva Jinek is brightly coloured, heavily styled and graphically decorative, whereas her winning portrait of An-Sofie Kesteleyn is in black and white: an emphatic, natural portrait of a fellow photographer who has been seriously ill. If a photographer is able to show two extremes of portraits at such high levels, then you may call yourself a versatile photographer. This, coupled with being highly prolific, creative and inventive, makes Robin de Puy the ultimate and perfect winner. ‘

Jury: Wim van Sinderen, Theo Audenaerd, Koos Breukel, Erik Schilp, Narda van ‘t Veer.

Stephan Vanfleteren

Winner Nationale Portretprijs 2012

Stephan Vanfleteren (1969), Rem Koolhaas, 2012

From the jury’s report: ‘Stephan Vanfleteren gets under the skin of Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. A distinctive portrait of a distinctive man. Commissioned by Belgian newspaper De Morgen, Vanfleteren created a ‘sculpture’, a ‘bust of marble’. The jury members placed themselves in the position of the portraitist, who is eye-to-eye with a predator. The photographer is mesmerized by what he sees. That look, that ego, that turtleneck sweater; he kept searching until he captured this image. Vanfleteren wins on photo and on oeuvre’.

Jury: Erik Schilp, Theo Audenaerd, Koos Breukel, Narda van ‘t Veer, Sabine Verschueren.

Annaleen Louwes

Winner Nationale Portretprijs 2011

Annaleen Louwes (1959), Dees, 2011

From the jury’s report: ‘With her portrait of Dees, Annaleen Louwes has put a crown on her impressive oeuvre. Reminiscent of a Dutch master’s painting, it holds an exceptional emotion, is beautiful in colour and thus the epitome of classical portrait art. With this portrait, Louwes – who does not always opt for beauty – approaches aesthetic perfection.’

Jury: Narda van ‘t Veer, Theo Audenaerd, Hans Gremmen, Ernst Veen, Erik Schilp.

Koos breukel

Winner Nationale Portretprijs 2010

Koos Breukel (1962), Mees, 2010

From the jury’s report: ‘Portraying is communicating, and that’s exactly what Breukel does in all his portraits. In this portrait, too, he shows his curiosity as well as his sharp analytical ability. Breukel himself speaks of a homage to life. His portraits are precise and serious, penetrating into the soul of both the sitter and the viewer.’

Jury: Pauline Kruseman, Theo Audenaerd, Els Barents, Narda van ‘t Veer, Sabine Verschueren.

©Dana Lixenberg, Lil' Kleine, 2017. Shortlist Rabo Photographic Portrait Prize 2018