The Board of Trustees of the Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Award, held its first meeting, with its newly appointed members, at HIPA’s headquarters in Downtown Dubai.
The meeting was chaired by His Excellency AbdulRahman Al Owais, Minister of Health and Community Protection, and Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs, in the presence of His Excellency Ali Khalifa bin Thalith, Secretary General, and members Majid Al Bastaki and Matar Bin Lahej. Members of the Board expressed their welcome to the new Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Ms. Hala Badri, who is the Director General of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority; ‘Dubai Culture’. They collectively praised her great efforts and achievements within the artistic and cultural field and welcomed the positive contribution it will have on the Board and in the course of HIPA in general.
The Board discussed a number of performance reports, future projects and plans to develop a general strategy aimed at enhancing deliverables in accordance with the vision of His Highness, the Crown Prince of Dubai and Patron of HIPA. The strategy aims to spread the art of photography locally and internationally, whilst developing art and culture as a hole, nurturing national talent, and sharing knowledge and opportunities for all.
The Board are dedicated to supporting and encouraging high-end technical practices across the platform of photography which would in-turn contribute to the dignity of people by building bridges of communication between civilisations, and deepening the concept of tolerance between them.
The Board not only reviewed the ongoing preparations for the ninth season of the HIPA Award Ceremony, which will be held on the 10th of March at Dubai Opera, but also summarised the comprehensive achievements of previous seasons, praising the exceptional performance of the executive management for their ongoing efforts in establishing the Award as one of the major international names in the photographic industry. HIPA’s achievements contribute to UAE’s reputation for being a nation which focuses on incubating talent, creativity and skill.
Since its launch in 2011, the Award has attracted more than 427,000 photographs, from over 243,000 participants from across 201 countries. His Excellency AbdulRahman Al Owais, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, praised HIPA’s reputation for achieving and maintaining excellence over the year, stressing that sustainability and consistency is crucial in ensuring the Award continues to thrive in the face-paced, tech savvy industry such as photography.
His Excellency added,” The Award has supported the talented community of photographers by offering more than 13 million Dirhams in cash prizes to the winners, including the largest grand prize in the world valued 120 thousand dollars for one winner, and has become a true incubator for discovering winning talent and a home for photographers from all over the world.”
Hala Badri, Vice Chairman of HIPA’s Board of Trustees, expressed her happiness for joining the Board, considering that HIPA has become one of the most influential cultural platforms within the photography scene in the Middle East. She further explained, “The Award succeeded in paving artistic paths among the talents within the Emirati community fostering knowledge and skills, which in-turn allowed our Emirati stars to shine bright in the photography sky both locally and internationally. She also stressed the importance of constructive communication among the photography community to discuss and understand their concerns and support them in achieving their future aspirations.”
Ali Khalifa bin Thalith, the Secretary General of HIPA, added, “The HIPA team have succeeded in achieving most of their local goals, and have made great strides at the regional and international levels. We have supported the transformation of the photography industry from one that was perceived to be unattainable by the masses, and only reserved for the elite, to one which has been embraced by the world and all ages. We have worked tirelessly to bring photography to even the unassuming artist, one’s who may never have dreamed that photography could be their calling and their craft. By supporting the industry and laying the right foundations of development, understanding, education and opportunity, we are changing the face of photography. The results can be seen across all our activities and achievements; our photography community are pleasantly surprising even us in the tenacity they have shown in not only supporting the industry but pushing it to new limits.