Patagonia in Photos exhibition opens at Espacio Fundación Telefónica

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Grand prize winner, Matias Mondaca, with his prizes and in front of his winning photo of the huemul at Cerro Castillo National Park.Grand prize winner, Matias Mondaca, with his prizes and in front of his winning photo of the huemul at Cerro Castillo National Park.
 
 
By Patrick Nixon
 
Patagon Journal launched on Thursday, March 28, at the Espacio Fundación Telefónica in Santiago, Chile, “Patagonia in Photos,” an exhibition of 42 photos featuring the winners and finalists of the magazine’s Fourth Patagonia Photo Contest.
 
Nearly 250 Patagon Journal readers, photographers, authorities and Patagonia aficionados marveled at the beautiful photography collection, and enjoyed live music from the talented Mía Praught Trio and a cocktail that included beers from Cerveza Austral, wines from Miguel Torres and Errazuriz, cheese from Lacteos Futaleufú, and tasty finger foods from La Maestra Gourmet.
 
The spectacular photos were done proper justice by Cuarto Digital and Canon Chile, who were responsible for the printing for the exhibition, which was on Hahnemuhle fine art paper.
 
The award ceremony took place in the auditorium of the Torre Telefónica building. Patagon Journal’s founder and executive editor, Jimmy Langman, opened the proceedings recounting the roots of the contest and magazine, and thanking Fundación Telefónica for the opportunity to exhibit the wonderful photographs in their prestigious exposition space, a move which contributes toward Patagon Journal’s mission of building a greater appreciation and environmental protection of the wild places of Chilean and Argentine Patagonia.
 
He also thanked the participants from around the world that submitted more than 3,000 entries to the competition.
 
“Ever since we began this contest in 2012,” said Langman, “we have always received amazing, high quality photos from both professional and amateur photographers. The contest continues to raise its bar each year and has turned into the leading photo contest in the region for nature photography. The special beauty of the flora, fauna, landscapes and culture of Patagonia is an unparalleled canvass for photographers.”
 
María Pía Basso, general coordinator of the Espacio Fundación Telefónica, spoke next, telling the audience of Telefónica’s commitment to bring exhibitions of cultural and artistic importance to the general public.
 
The opening guest speaker of the awards ceremony, Moisés Grimberg, superintendent of the Network of Patagonia parks for Chile’s national park service (Conaf), explained the challenges ahead for the expanding park system in the Patagonia region and thanked Patagon Journal for its role in promoting sustainable tourism and Chile’s national park system worldwide.
 
Pablo Muñoz, president of Fundación Centro de Estudios de Montaña, an NGO which advocates and researches responsible behavior in the mountains of Chile, gave a talk on the unique treasure trove of mountains that predominate in Chile and how his organization is working to protect mountain environments.
 
Chilean pro photographers Jean Paul de la Harpe and Pablo Valenzuela Vaillant, members of the panel of judges that selected the winners of the photo contest amongst the four categories –nature, environment, travel & culture, and outdoor sports – commended the quality of all the entries and discussed why the Patagonia region is such a tremendous place to practice photography and gave tips on how to do it well amid the region's unpredictable climatic conditions and difficult terrain. 
 
A surprise guest speaker, nature photographer Claudio Almarza, spoke about his experiences in the region and expressed his great appreciation for the work of the magazine before presenting the Reader’s Prize to Ivan Berrios for his photo, “Inner Peace,” which shows a puma and a baby puma in Torres del Paine National Park.
 
The award ceremony culminated with Patricia Perez, marketing manager of Cruce Andino, presenting the grand prize to Matías Mondaca for his sublime photograph of a huemul deer in the falling snow at Cerro Castillo National Park.
 
Mondaca received a 5 nights/6 days trip for two persons with Cruce Andino, in which he will sail across three beautiful lakes through the Andean mountain range, in a route that extends from Puerto Varas, Chile, to Bariloche, Argentina, and returning the same way. The trip includes stays at Petrohue Lodge, Puerto Blest, Hotel Llao Llao, and Hotel Natura.
 
As first prize winner in the Nature category, Mondaca, just like the winners of the other three categories (Environment, Outdoor Sports, Travel & Culture), also won a gift certificate of 200,000 Chilean pesos (approx. $US 300) for use in the Patagonia stores of Chile. Moreover, he won a set of large-format photo books from Tompkins Conservation.
 
The winners of second place in the four categories received F-stop camera bags from Cuarto Digital, and a one-day photography workshop with Chile Indomito.
 
Over the next four months, Patagon Journal will also co-organize a series of workshops and seminars at Espacio Fundación Telefónica and bring the Wild and Scenic Film Festival, perhaps the world’s most important environmental film festival, to the Chilean capital. Stay tuned for more information on these upcoming events.
 
The Patagonia in Photos exhibition is free and open for viewing by the general public for nearly four months more, until July 21, at Espacio Telefonica (Av. Providencia 127, Santiago).
 
Below, more photos from the event: 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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