| 10 October 2019

5,000 photos highlight vital role of ‘concrete in life’

Judges “delighted” as global photography competition announces winners

London, 10 October 2019 – The Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA) today announced the winners of its “Concrete in Life” global photography competition. More than 5,000 entries from more than 40 countries showcased the vital role played by concrete in supporting economies, connecting communities, and building innovative structures all over the world.

Open to professional and amateur photographers via social media and online, the competition was split across three categories (Urban design, Practical concrete, Small scale concrete) with the entries demonstrating the widespread and diverse use of concrete across the globe. Benjamin Sporton, Chief Executive of the GCCA said:

“We were stunned and delighted by the breadth, beauty and creativity of entries we received. The competition has really shown just how important a role concrete plays in our everyday lives, and how many different uses we have for it. We are overwhelmed with the quantity and standard of the entries, and a huge thank you to everyone who took part.”

The overall winner who won the $10,000 top prize was chosen from the individual category winners (listed below), who each won a $2,500 category prize.

The overall winner was:

  • Practical concrete (Amateur) – Rolando Batacan – click here for image

Location: Al Aweer Vegetable and Fruit Market, Dubai

Description: “This photo shows one section of the pedestrian bridge located near Al Aweer Vegetable and Fruit Market in Dubai. Imitating life’s cycle, these workers cross the bridge every day in the morning and back in the evening after real hard work.”

Mr. Batacan said:

“To be the winner of ‘Concrete in Life’ means a huge amount to me. The concrete bridge shown in my photo traverses the busy Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed road in Dubai, used by Asian expats mostly working as porters in the fruit and vegetable market. That’s the bridge’s practically usage, but it’s symmetry against the backdrop of Dubai portrays architectural beauty. That’s the fascination of Concrete in Life.”

The category winners are as follows:

  • Urban design and use (Professional) – Pedro Ajuriaguerra Saiz – click here for image

Location: Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, Spain

Description: “My son runs on the exterior facade of the science museum of Valencia, Spain. It is a white concrete facade designed by the renowned architect Santiago Calatrava. In that area there is a small pond that reflects part of the facade generating the effect of an eye.”

  • Urban design and use (Amateur) – Corin Gibbon – click here for image

Location: Le Corbusier’s Capitol Complex, India

Description: “The visit was a real highlight of a ‘once in a lifetime’ trip that I undertook with my wife last year. Given my interest in concrete architecture, to visit Chandigarh really was a dream come true!”

  • Practical concrete (Professional) – Jason Chowdhury – click here for image

Location: Harbin, China

Description: “The story is all about loneliness in our city life. I had noticed a security guard was walking under the bridge without any companion. After capturing the photo, I went down to talk with him. He told me that he doesn’t mind being alone. He enjoys his lonely time and he feels like a solitary traveller.”

  • Small scale concrete (Professional) – Emman Foronda – click here for image

Location: Lobo, Philippines

Description: “Fishermen use an “Artificial Coral Reef”, an open cube made of pre-cast concrete, and then distribute it onto the seabed. This helps enhance the marine life habitat as well as increase fish productivity therefore promoting local tourism and aquaculture.”

  • Small scale concrete (Amateur) – Santiago Aleman – click here for image

Location: La Mancha, Spain

Description: “Cylindrical concrete containers used in the drought prone region of La Mancha, Spain, to bring water into remote areas with difficult accessibility for domestic use. The simplicity of the composition shows the relationship between the three elements that inhabit the space: the dry, bright blue sky, the parched clay earth, and, in contrast, the water filled concrete cylinders.”

  • “Best Concrete in Life” and overall winner Rolando Batacan for ‘Sunrise in Dubai’, United Arab Emirates.       

Judging the entries were:

  • John Fairley, Photographer and Creative Director of Curious Productions (and designer of theCconcrete in Life trophies)
  • Gian Luca Barone, Senior Associate at Zaha Hadid Architects.
  • Benjamin Sporton, Chief Executive of the GCCA.

As one of the most widely used man-made materials on the planet, concrete can be found all around us: in the houses we live in and the offices we work in; the roads we drive on and the pavements we walk along; in the bridges that connect us; the windfarms that provide us with energy; and the sea barriers that protect us. As the authoritative voice for the cement and concrete sector across the world, the GCCA is working to highlight how concrete is a resilient, versatile, innovative and often beautiful building material that shapes the world we live in today. Whilst also working to ensure it is a sustainable, safe and durable solution for the needs of future generations.

About the GCCA

Launched in January 2018, the Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA) is dedicated to developing and strengthening the sector’s contribution to sustainable construction. The GCCA aims to foster innovation throughout the construction value chain in collaboration with industry associations as well as architects, engineers and innovators. In this way, the association demonstrates how concrete solutions can meet global construction challenges and sustainable development goals while showcasing responsible industrial leadership in the manufacture and use of cement and concrete. The GCCA is headquartered in London, England. It complements and supports the work done by associations at national and regional level.

Media enquiries should be directed to:

Paul Adeleke

Communications and Policy Director