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「第48回公益社団法人日本広告写真家協会公募展(APAアワード2020)に寄せて」

APAアワードに沢山の応募を頂きありがとうございました。
私達APAは広告写真家の親睦団体として1958年に生まれました。広告は右肩上がりの高度成長の波に乗り、多くの著名な写真家が輩出された時代でした。1989年に社団法人、2012年に公益社団法人となり、創立62年を迎えます。当初は優秀な新人広告写真家を発掘するために始められた公募展ですが、2006年より協会の主幹事業として、公益的観点からその年の優れた写真を中心とした広告写真をアーカイブ化するプロジェクトも担う事になり「APAアワード」として新たにスタートいたしました。それまでに別々に開催していた写真作品部門と広告作品部門を併合し、写真表現の質的向上を図ると共に、その時代を代表する広告作品を歴史的遺産として後世に残す役割を果たしております。そして公募展の頃より多くの写真家が、この賞をステップボードとして広告写真家の世界に華々しくデビューしてきた歴史があります。

今世紀に入り経済は激変し、写真を撮る道具も見せる場も大きく変化して参りましたが、写真が人を感動させる力そのものは変わっておりません。プロばかりでなく一般の人々もスマホで驚く程の素晴らしい写真が出来上がります。写真家は、独自のテクニックや表現方法を模索し研鑽を重ねて参りましたが、カメラの性能の向上は職業写真家のそれらを上回る発展を遂げております。これからの写真家に求められるものはプロ、アマチュアの枠を越えたサムシングなのだと思います。

今回の入賞した作品を見ますと、そのサムシングが見事に生かされたものが数々見られました。広告作品部門も写真作品部門も新鮮なアングルの切り取り方や色使い、アイディア等々、確実に内容や感性が既存の枠を越えていて、そのサムシングが感じられます。応募の方の年齢は20代から40代が多いと聞いておりますが、これからの時代を担っていく世代が多い事を大変嬉しく思いました。

最後に「APAアワード2020」にご応募頂きました皆様、並びに本事業にご賛同頂きご後援賜りました、経済産業省、文化庁、東京都、ご協力頂きました関係企業各位に深く感謝の意を表します。

Commemorating the 48th Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association Exhibition (APA Awards 2020)

Firstly, I would like to extend a big thank-you to everyone who submitted works to the APA Awards. The Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association (APA) was established in 1958—during the nation’s super-growth period—when the advertising sector was expanding exponentially in tandem. This was also a time when many famous photographers rose to prominence. APA became an Incorporated Association in 1989, a Public Interest Incorporated Association in 2012, and this year the Association will be celebrating its 62nd anniversary. As of 2006, a project was launched to archive advertising photography—particularly the excellent photography submitted to the contest (originally launched with a view to acknowledging talented new advertising photographers) each year—as a major project of the Association as well as the idea of benefiting the public. In conjunction with this project, the Awards were re-launched combining the original photo contest and advertising contest as the Photography and Advertising Sections. Today, the APA Awards assume a key role in boosting the quality of photographic expression as well as preserving advertising photography typical of our times as the legacy of the advertising business for future generations. The awards have also proved a valuable stepping stone, as many individuals who won or placed in the contest subsequently made noteworthy debuts in the advertising sector.

Undeniably, economic conditions have changed dramatically since the beginning of the current century, and over the period since then the equipment used to take photographs—and the way to present them—have also changed and developed. Still, the idea that photography is intended to inspire has not changed. Not only professionals but laypeople can take incredible photographs today—even with just a smartphone. Photographers tend to polish their skills by incorporating new means of expression and new technologies, but camera technology has now advanced faster than photographers can grow and develop. To be successful at the current juncture, what photographers need now is an intangible something that is entirely unrelated to whether the individual is a professional or an amateur.

Many of the winners this year have exactly that special something. Both the Advertising and Photography Sections clearly demonstrate the intangible, as seen in content that moves beyond current convention, including fresh-and-new ways of framing, use of color, concepts, and much more. I have heard that the age of the contestants ranges from the 20s to the 40s; it makes me extremely happy that many of these people will be the ones to perpetuate our art into the future.

In conclusion, I would like to once again extend my deepest appreciation to those who submitted works to the APA Awards 2020 contest, as well as our sponsors including the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry; the Agency for Cultural Affairs; the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, and to all associated companies.

白鳥真太郎

白鳥真太郎

公益社団法人日本広告写真家協会 会長

Shiratori Shintaro

Chairman, Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association