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West African Self-portraiter Awarded as One of the Most Prestigious in the Industry

One of Africa’s most important living photographers and contemporary artists, who photographs himself in the style of leading historical figures including Martin Luther King and Angela Davis, has won the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation prize 2023. The Cameroonian-born Nigerian photographer Samuel Fosso was awarded the £30,000 prize – one of the most prestigious in the industry – at the Photographers’ Gallery in London on Thursday. The award was in recognition of Fosso’s retrospective exhibition, Samuel Fosso, at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris, which traced a career spanning almost 50 years. Described as “a man of 1,000 faces”, Fosso plays the role of leading historical figures in front of the camera, which also includes Mao Zedong, Malcolm X and Patrice Lumumba, demonstrating photography’s role in the construction of myths.