2021 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Competition
Grand Prize: Monlam by David Marciano
"The Great Monlam prayer festival was established by Lama Tsongkapa in 1409 and this celebration has been observed every year throughout Tibet. Monalm is considered by many to be the most important religious festival for the Tibetan people. Monks and pilgrims pray for several days for long life, for the growth of Dharma in the minds and for world peace. During the festival there are prayers, ritual dances and huge processions. The most important day is the “unveiling the Buddha”, monks and pilgrims carry a huge Buddha painting ( TANGKHA) on their backs and unroll it on the hill so that it can be blessed by all people. These photos were taken in Labrang, Tongren and Langmusi."
David Marciano was born in June 1971 in a town in the province of Pisa where he still lives and works today. He began to take an interest in photography in the early 90s, when before leaving for a volunteer experience in India, he bought his first reflex. Since then travel, solidarity and photography will go hand in hand. He trained within Italian photographic circles and immediately became interested in black and white photos, which he developed and printed, the same passion he now dedicates to digital photography. His subjects always and exclusively revolve around the human sphere, dedicating himself to portraiture, street photography but above all to storytelling, focusing his interest in telling small stories that are part of the culture, customs and religious aspect of the countries he visits.
Since 2012 he has been traveling through the Tibetan areas of the Himalayas interested in the religious rites of Buddhism and nomadic lifestyle.
SIPA Honorable MENTION 2020 storyboard. Finalist and published in URBAN PHOTO AWARDS 2020
The 2021 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Competition is sponsored by Nikon
Find out more about the the Banff Mountain Photo Essay Competition.
Grand Prize: David Marciano
"Marciano stood out with his dynamic and cinematic images. His well-curated photo essay not only transported me to a distant corner of the world, but also told a rich story about the people he encountered there."
– 2021 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Jury, Trixie Pacis
"When I look at David's essay, I am immediately taken to the place and I feel an emotional connection to the people and landscape. For me, this connection between the viewer and the photographs make for the most successful photo stories. The way David composes his images, finds unique angles and moments, really made his submission exceptional."
– 2021 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Jury, Pat Kane
Special Jury Mention: Tribals Satpura by Dinesh Parab
"Tribals in the Satpura range have been celebrating Holi for the last 774 years at a small hamlet called Kathi in Nandurbar district, Maharashtra, India. Some fifty thousand people, mostly tribal, come from the neighboring states to come together to celebrate this unique Holi celebration ever year. Marking the festival through song and dance, dressed in traditional outfit, they celebrate throughout the night after maintaining celibacy for twelve days through strict traditional and religious rituals."
Dinesh Parab was born in India, based in Mumbai and works as a Photojournalist; he is currently the Chief Photographer at the Outlook Magazine. His work has been published in various newspapers and news magazines such as The Week Magazine, DNA Newspaper, and the Blitz Tabloid Newspaper. Dinesh’s photography has covered events like the Gujarat Riots and the Gujarat Earthquake, the Orissa Cyclone, the millennium Sunrise at Andaman and Nicobar Islands in 1999, Mumbai Terror Attack 26/11, and more.