Award-winning photos on display at Fort Bard (AO) from 26 March to 25 April 2023
The jury of the international contest “Fotografare il Parco”, organized by Stelvio, Gran Paradiso, Abruzzo, Lazio e Molise and de la Vanoise National Parks, with the patronage of Alparc, Federparchi and the participation of the media partner “La Rivista della Natura”, has met a few days ago.

Now in its XVI edition, the contest dedicated to the protected areas, partners of the initiative, once again aroused great interest among landscape and nature photography enthusiasts.

For the contest, there were, actually, over 420 participants and over 3,100 photos submitted.

The large numbers were matched by the high quality of the competing images. Photographs often of high aesthetic, narrative, or descriptive value, capturing the beauty and peculiarities of the organising parks in the moment of the shot.

The three overall winners were very different, both in the subjects depicted and in the photographic approach.

The photograph “Sopravvivenza” (Survival) by Emilio Ricci was placed first. A chamois crouched and partially covered by blizzard snow tells of the constant challenges for survival faced by mountain animals. “Velo di nuvole” (Veil of clouds) was placed second, a long night exposure taken in Valsavarenche by Luca Nasigrosso, where the slow movement of the clouds covers the mountain reliefs with a veil. The image “Tra inverno e primavera” (Between winter and spring) by Elisa Confortini was placed third, where on a foggy winter day, in the still bare forest, the opening of buds heralds spring.

In the categories dedicated to the landscapes of each protected area, we saw emerging “Layer”, realised in Forca d’Acero by Marco Pantanella (for the Abruzzo, Lazio e Molise National Park), “Era Glaciale” (Ice Age) of the Gran Paradiso Glacier by Jacopo Ursitti (Gran Paradiso National Park), “Ortles” by Dario Fedele (Stelvio National Park” and the photo “Primordial” of Lake Moncenisio by Marco Barone (Parc national de la Vanoise).
The first category prizes were awarded to “Discussioni tra coniugi” (Discussions between spouses) by Maurizio Giovannini (the “Park Wildlife category”), to “Jurassic World” by Andrea Belingheri (the “Park Microworld and Natural Details) and to the photograph “Il solitario” (The lone) by Massimo Arcaro (the “Park Plant World”).

The image “Una casa tra le stelle” (A house among the stars) by Roberto Bertero was then awarded the special prize “Interaction between man and nature”.
The level of the photographs in the contest and, at times, the difficulty on deciding on a ranking led the jury to recommend a further eight images. 

Nature photography is an important tool for knowledge and for the empathy it creates towards the beauty enclosed in nature. However, it has to be taken with respect for nature. Disturbance to fauna or environments was therefore taken into account during the jury’s assessment of the prize-winning photos.

The prize-giving ceremony will be held at Fort Bard, in the Aosta Valley. Then, the winning and mentioned photos will be on display at the Fortress stables from 26 March to 25 April. An important opportunity for both the winning photographers and the organising Parks to be discovered in a location that is visited by thousands of people every day.

Moreover, after last year’s celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Gran Pariso and Abruzzo, Lazio e Molise National Parks, this year marks the 60th anniversary of the Parc national de la Vanoise establishment, the first French national park to be created.

For the management and staff of la Vanoise, “on the occasion of the Parc national de la Vanoise 60th anniversary, which falls this year, it is a huge satisfaction to see that there has been a lot of interest and participation in this 16th edition of the contest. The contribution of the photographs submitted, of such a high standard, is great in introducing the jewels of our Parks, as well as those of other National Parks, that are our partners. These photographers are part of a large family of the protected area and help to celebrate this anniversary of mountain and biodiversity protection in the best possible way”.

Here is the full list of the winning photographs:
Overall winners
1st           Sopravvivenza (Survival) by Emilio Ricci
2nd          Velo di nuvole. Valsavarenche (Veil of clouds. Valsavarenche) by Luca Nasigrosso
3rd          Tra inverno e primavera (Between winter and spring) by Elisa Confortini
Category A – The Park Landscapes
Abruzzo, Lazio e Molise National Park:          Layer. Forca d’Acero by Marco Pantanella
Gran Paradiso National Park:                        Era glaciale. Ghiacciaio del Gran Paradiso (Ice Age. Gran Paradiso Glacier) by Jacopo Ursitti
Stelvio National Park:                                    Ortles by Dario Fedele
Parc national de la Vanoise:                          Primordial. Lago del Moncenisio (Primordial. Moncenisio Lake) by Marco Barone
Category B – The Park Wildlife
1st           Discussioni fra coniugi (Discussions between spouses) by Maurizio Giovannini
2nd          Sguardo al tramonto (Gaze at sunset) by Massimo Arcaro
3rd          Cucù. Lepre alpina (Peek-a-boo. Alpine hare) by Denis Bertanzetti
Category C – The Park Microworld and Natural Details
1st           Jurassic world by Andrea Belingheri
2nd          L’escluso (The outcast) by Giuseppe Bonali
3rd          Nel mondo del gambero (In the shrimp world) by Iacopo Nerozzi
Category D – The Park Plant World
1st           Il solitario (The lone) by Massimo Arcaro
2nd          Forca d’Acero by Paolo Pucci
3rd          Morning dew by Edwig Vanhassel
Special Prize
1st           Una casa tra le stelle (A house among the stars) by Roberto Bertero
Recommended Photos
Notte di tempesta. Lago Rosset. Parco Nazionale Gran Paradiso (Stormy night. Lake Rosset. Gran Paradiso National Park) by Luca Casale
Bramito (Bell) by Emilio Ricci
All’ombra del Gran Nomenon. Parco Nazionale Gran Paradiso (In the shadow of Gran Nomenon, Gran Paradiso National Park) by Fabrizio Gottardi
Loving vincent by Lorenzo Shoubridge
Tramonto in Paradiso. Bivacco Leonessa. Parco Nazionale Gran Paradiso (Sunset in Heaven. Leonessa Bivouac. Gran Paradiso National Park) by Roberto Bertero
Foreste senili. Lampazzo/Cicerana. Parco Nazionale d’Abruzzo Lazio e Molise (Senile forests. Lampazzo/Cicerana. Abruzzo, Lazio e Molise National Park) by Riccardo Mattea
Onde. Lago di San Giacomo. Parco Nazionale dello Stelvio (Waves. San Giacomo Lake. Stelvio National Park) by Giacomo Albo
Lo spirito del bosco (The Spirit of the wood) by Elisa Confortini
Bormio, Torino, Pescasseroli, Chambéry, 27th February 2023