Sara Al Obaidly Ghanim The Winner exhibited in the Taylor Wessing Prize exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery

  • © Sara Al Obaidly, Ghanim the Winner (Cropped)
    © Sara Al Obaidly, Ghanim the Winner (Cropped)
  • © Sara Al Obaidly, Ghanim the Winner (full image)
    © Sara Al Obaidly, Ghanim the Winner (full image)
  • © Sara Al Obaidly Ghanim The Winner
    © Sara Al Obaidly 'Ghanim The Winner
Sara Al Obaidly one of 57 featured artists exhibiting in the National Portrait Gallery in London as part of the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize from 17 November 2016 – 26 February 2017. She was selected as part of this exhibition for her image 'Ghanim the Winner'.

Ghanim Almuftah, who’s first name means ‘winner’ in Arabic, is a 14-year-old, born with a rare disorder named Caudal Regression Syndrome (CDS), which impairs the development of the lower spine. The image was part of a larger project, documenting this young athletes passion for sport and his dreams of becoming a future Paralympian.

Ghanim plays a huge part in changing perceptions on living with physical disabilities in the Middle East and especially in his home country of Qatar, where up until recently attitudes towards those with disability were that of exclusion and discrimination.

A ROTA Goodwill Ambassador and an inspiration to thousands of people across the globe, raising awareness on persons living with physical disabilities, through his on-going charity work; as well as sharing his personal journey via social media with over 900,000 followers on Instagram (g_almuftah).
The aim of my series was to capture him in his favorite sportswear and kit, as an example, his determination to succeed has resulted in him being one of the only divers in the world with his type of disability. 

The Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2016 is the leading international competition, open to all, which celebrates and promotes the very best in contemporary portrait photography from around the world.

Showcasing talented young photographers, gifted amateurs and established professionals, the competition features a diverse range of images and tells the often fascinating stories behind the creation of the works, from formal commissioned portraits to more spontaneous and intimate moments capturing friends and family.

The selected images, many of which will be on display for the first time in this exhibition, explore both traditional and contemporary approaches to the photographic portrait whilst capturing a range of characters, moods and locations.

Sara Al Obaidly is a photographer and film director who was born in Doha, Qatar and grew up in the Middle East until relocating to the UK to continue her education, studying a BA and MA at The University of Brighton.

Her projects explore varying contemporary political, philosophical and social issues. Through the medium of portraiture, she seeks to witness and record intimate moments of human emotion, exposing a reality that is unshielded and authentic.

Sara was also  shortlisted for this years Life Framer Youthhood Award with an Honorable mention,she was also published in 2014′s Creative Review Photography Annual and listed by TIME magazine’s Lightbox in ’22 of This Years Best Portraits also in 2014.

Most recently Sara was awarded a 2016 grant from the Doha Film Institute to develop her first narrative feature film as well as Awarded a scholarship to the 2016 Gulf Summer University to study at France’s National Film school, La Fémis.

To see more of Sara's work visit her website here

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© EAST WING 2017