©Fondation Carmignac

Newsha Tavakolian (born 1981 in Tehran, Iran). A self-taught photographer, Newsha began working professionally in the Iranian press at the age of 16 at a women’s daily newspaper called Zan. At the age of 18, she was the youngest photographer to cover the 1999 student uprising, which was a turning point for the country’s blossoming reformist movement and for Newsha personally as a photojournalist; a year later she joined the New York based agency Polaris Images. In 2002 she started working internationally, covering the war in Iraq for several months. She has since covered regional conflicts and natural disasters and has made social documentaries in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Yemen. Her work is published in international magazines and newspapers such as Time Magazine, Newsweek, Stern, Le Figaro, Colors, The New York Times, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, NRC Handelsblad and The New York Times Magazine. Website


Chapelle des Beaux-arts de Paris
14, rue de Bonaparte, 75006 Paris
13th May - 7th June 2015
Open Tuesday to Saturday from 11 am to 7 pm
The exhibition will also be open on Saturday 16th May until 1am upon the 'Nuit Européenne des Musées 2015'
Free admission


is published by Kehrer Verlag

Bilingual publication in English/French

Carmignac Award partners :

Beaux-Arts de Paris


  • Christian Caujolle, independant curator
  • Celina Lunsford, vice-president of the Deutsche Academy, artistic director of the Fotografie Forum Frankfurt
  • Davide Monteleone, winner of the 2012 Carmignac Gestion photojournalism award
  • Jean-Pierre Perrin, international reporter with Libération, specialist of the area
  • Reza, photographer
  • Jérôme Sessini, photographer
  • Mark Sealy, director of Autograph abp in London
  • Sam Stourdzé, director of the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne
A portrait of Somayyeh, a 32-year old divorced teacher.
Newsha Tavakolian, A portrait of Somayyeh, a 32-year old divorced teacher.

Newsha Tavakolian's report

The theme of this fifth edition is Iran, power at the center of international geostrategic issues. Its geographical position, its economic situation, its nuclear potential demonstrate that Iran is at a defining moment in its history.

The jury, chaired by Anahita Ghabaian, director of the Silk Road Gallery in Tehran, selected Newsha Tavakolian as the fifth laureate of the Carmignac Gestion Photojournalism Award on 30 October 2013. She completed her report between December 2013 and April 2014 in Iran. Her identity has been kept secret until now for security reasons.

Girls smoking (1)
Girls smoking (1)
Young couple (2)
Young couple (2)
Wall in Teheran (3)
Wall in Teheran (3)
Qaem Mall (4)
Qaem Mall (4)
Ali and his daughter Hadis (5)
Ali and his daughter Hadis (5)
Taxi Driver (6)
Taxi Driver (6)
Najieh (7)
Najieh (7)
Eram amusement park (8)
Eram amusement park (8)

(1) Girls smoking


Girls smoking during a break between classes at a university campus.


(2) Young couple


A young couple on the coast of the Caspian Sea. Iran has among the highest divorce rates in the world, with courts unable to handle the many cases.


(3) Wall in Teheran


A laborer working on a new ventilation shaft, on a wall in Tehran.


(4) Qaem Mall

A young woman tries to sneak a peek of a drawing of a woman covered by white paper in Qaem Mall, under Iran’s Islamic laws showing women’s bodies in public is forbidden.


(5) Ali and his daughter Hadis

Ali, a war veteran, holding his daughter Hadis, on her 8th birthday party. He fought on the fronts of the Iran-Iraq war for seven years, joining as a volunteer when he was 16. “ My body has returned home,” he says, “but my spirit stayed behind.” 


(6) Taxi driver

A taxi driver in his car on a rainy day. Behind him a poster of an upcoming performance of Samuel Beckett’s play ‘Waiting for Godot’.


(7) Najieh

Najieh doing volunteer work during a nutrition education drive at a school in a poorer area of Tehran, she and her family, who are all religious, are deeply involved in helping the poor.


(8) Eram amusement park

Three men watching the crowds at the Eram amusement park in West of Tehran. For a long time the park was Tehran’s only outdoor playground, but the years have taken its toll on its attractions, the lions have grown old and some of the rides are closed.