16-year-old Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year winner, Skye Meaker to address delegates alongside conservationist Dr Jane Goodall
The Natural History Museum is showcasing its prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland. The Forum engages society’s foremost political, business and other leaders to define and shape global, regional and industry agendas – this year it has a focus on environmental impact and biodiversity loss.
Brought to Davos for the first time, the winning images from the fifty-fourth competition will be presented as a large-scale projection installation, seen by global decision-makers during a four-day programme heavily focused around the state of the planet, conservation and environmental sustainability. A truly international competition, the images were selected in 2018 by an esteemed panel of judges who reviewed more than 45,000 entries from across 95 countries.
Natural History Museum Director Sir Michael Dixon says, ‘The Natural History Museum’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and exhibition is not just a celebration of photography; it is a platform for the Museum to convene a global conversation about the state of wildlife today. The cutting-edge digital display at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting will put the work of passionate nature photographers and conservationists at the heart of international conversations, debate and action for the natural world.’
The installation also provides a powerful presence for the subjects of the photographs, including vulnerable ecosystems and species facing extinction, amongst the world’s decision-makers.
The collaboration provides a remarkable opportunity for the latest Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year winner. 16-year-old South African Skye Meaker has wanted to be a nature photographer since receiving his first pocket camera at the age of seven. He won the coveted grand title in October 2018 for his charming portrait of a leopard waking from sleep in Botswana.
Skye will be speaking about his passion for wildlife at a special event alongside renowned conservationist Dr Jane Goodall. Taking place on Tuesday 22 January at 12.30pm (GMT), the talk will be streamed live on the Forum’s website. Skye will be the youngest participant in the Forum’s programme of events, while the oldest is one of his heroes, 92-year-old Sir David Attenborough.
Skye Meaker says ‘To think that my dream of sharing my pictures with the world would not only come true by winning Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year, but allow me to be the youngest speaker at the WEF Annual Meeting, is just truly mind blowing and I am both honoured and grateful for the opportunity Wildlife Photographer of the Year has given me.’
Clare Matterson, Director of Engagement at the Natural History Museum, says, ‘Inspiring and supporting young people is of paramount importance to the Museum, and this life-changing opportunity for Skye is a testament to the global impact of Wildlife Photographer of the Year on the nature photographers, naturalists and scientists of the future.’