The first one hundred days of Google+ saw more than 3.4 billion photographs uploaded onto the platform. This prompted Google to take its Art Project clout and launch its own student photo competition with a Google-sized grand prize: an exhibition at London’s Saatchi Gallery and an all-expenses-paid trip to anywhere in the world to shoot under the watchful eye of a professional photography coach.
More than 20,000 students in 146 countries applied for the honor, and on April 25, Google announced that Sweden-based Viktor Johansson series of images won the gold. Johansson’s entry (which depicts the life of a competitive diver through a melancholy lens), along with those of the top ten finalists, is on view on Google+ and through July 22 at Saatchi. Saatchi’s concurrent exhibition, Out of Focus: Photography, marks the gallery’s first show dedicated entirely to photography in ten years.
For his entry, the twenty-four-year-old Johansson tracked the daily grind of Christoffer Eskilsson, Sweden’s only ten-meter male diver. Having grown up in Lund, where space to practice his jumps was scarce, the athlete moved to Stockholm in January to train full-time. Eskilsson is the only diver in Sweden supported by the Swedish Olympic Committee.