The Brooklyn Navy Yard attracts photographers. This 300-acre secure industrial park offers a varied mix of natural and industrial landscapes, historic and innovative buildings, aging elements infused with new energy. While the Yard remains a vibrant and growing industrial park, and it is a popular site for professional film productions and movie shoots, for the past two years, we have offered our Seasonal Photography Tours (the next one is January 25) to provide amateur photographers the opportunity to explore the Yard with their cameras. We also invite those tour participants to submit their photos to our annual contest, and the results have been remarkable.
So, after four tours spanning an entire year, sifting through 121 photographs submitted by 20 different photographers, and a full month of voting, we have selected our winners for the 2014 Brooklyn Navy Yard Photography Contest!
People’s Choice Award Winner: Nick Hirst
This award is given to the photograph that garners the most votes from the public, both on our website and from paper ballots submitted at the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92, where all 12 finalists are still on display. Nick’s photo was the runaway winner, and it’s not hard to see why. While the image is of an ordinary object – a rain gutter – it captures so much of what appeals to photographers about the Navy Yard, especially the Yard’s Naval Hospital Annex, where this photo was taken. As we said last winter when we received the photo, “Texture is the name of the game here: cracking, growing, creeping, and bending. … The house was constructed in 1863, and layers of its life are documented here by Nick.” He gets extra credit for capturing these vibrant colors on what was a rather gray winter day.
Photographer’s Choice Award Winner: Yali Lewis
Rather than a popular vote, this award is selected by a panel of the four professional artists and photographers who were assigned each season to choose a slate of three finalists. Each year we invite photographers who have a connection to the Yard to be judges – in 2013, we had four Yard tenants; in 2014, our judges were all participants in the BLDG 92 Visiting Artist Program.
Yali’s photo is a truly remarkable work of composition and scale, and like Nick’s, it lapped the field with the voters. As we said about it the time, this photo “captures so many wonderful geometric, industrial features – the lines of ropes, the mounds of gravel, the 45-degree angle of the ship’s stern – alongside two men having a spirited conversation. Weekend visitors get a somewhat distorted view of the yard today, as it is lacking one of its main features: people.” “Conversation,” as this piece is titled, helps to people the Yard, while also impressing upon the viewer the enormous scale of some of the industrial enterprises there – in this case, the unloading of gravel from an enormous cargo ship.
Congratulations again to Yali and Nick! Not only will they get the incredible sense of pride of winning this increasingly prestigious award, but they also each win a two-hour private tour of the Brooklyn Navy Yard with us for up to 30 of their friends.
We would like to again thank all of the participants on our seasonal photo tours, all the photographers who submitted their photos to the contest, and our wonderful judges: Randy Duchaine, Theresa Fitzgerald, Doug Keljikian, Michael Miller, and Travis Magee. Don’t miss the 2015 tour season – the winter installment is coming up Sunday, January 25!
Turnstile Tours offers the Seasonal Photography Tour of the Brooklyn Navy Yard four times throughout the year. The first tour of the 2015 season will be Sunday, January 25 at 11am. Get more information here, and advance ticket purchase is highly recommended. We also offer our Past, Present & Future Tour of the Brooklyn Navy Yard every weekend 2-4pm, and other special themed tours of The Yard. All tours are offered in partnership with and begin at the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92, which offers free admission to three floors of exhibitions on the Yard’s past and present and a host of great special events and programs.