2022 Nationalparks Austria was looking for creative talents for the eighth time who wanted to engage with our natural heritage in a very personal way in the fields of photography, film or literature.
This year, under the theme "Wonders of Nature", we invited people to embark on an adventure in the extraordinary nature of the national parks and discover at their small and large wonders.
These wonders are now reflected in the works of the media fellows!
Thank you for your inspiring and creative works!
Media Scholarship 2022
Patrick Holzapfel and Ivana Miloš
The author, filmmaker and freelance curator and the illustrator, author and translator dedicated themselves to their project "Words for the World Out There - Encyclopaedia of the Disappearing World " in the Kalkalpen, Gesäuse, Thayatal and Neusiedler See - Seewinkel National Parks. Their work consists on the one hand of short literary descriptions of creatures and natural phenomena, and on the other hand of illustrations, some of them nature prints, which are connected to what is described. They want to move away from the many typical images of beautiful nature, towards the microcosms that compose a landscape like the pieces of a puzzle.
"We need nature not only as an economic factor, but also for our soul".
In his film, media designer Aaron Moser pleads for a sensual perception of nature as an antithesis to modern man's increasing alienation from it. During his stay in the Neusiedler See - Seewinkel National Park, he accompanies a national park ranger who introduces viewers to the special features of this open landscape. With sweeping landscape shots, he wants to convey the power of nature and remind people of wonder and gratitude.
"The first and often overwhelming impression of landscapes is usually characterised by the lavish abundance and interplay of all elements such as plants, animals, sounds. We take it all in at the same time and so an overlapping and individual feeling to the nature we are in arises with all our senses." The photographer deliberately wanted to take an opposite position in the Gesäuse National Park and isolate individual elements from their immediate surroundings with the help of staged still lifes. This gives the objects a voice of their own and allows the viewer to examine their materiality and anatomy and let them speak.
The photographer came to photography through species conservation, so ethics are the highest priority when photographing wild animals. Top commandments: Nature, let nature be nature, do not disturb animals and approach each motive with respect and gratitude. He carefully explored the Neusiedler See - Seewinkel National Park, spending many hours lying on the ground, sometimes in camouflage, sometimes without, "Always in the way my subjects preferred". The results are immediate and intimate photographs of wildlife and insights into the work of the National Park.
The biologist in the field of nature conservation and biodiversity management has been devoted to the Austrian national parks since his voluntary environmental year in the Thayatal National Park. Through his photos, he wants to contribute to nature conservation, to capture the wonder of nature and the uniqueness of our planet. In his photographs, he lets mountain formations, valley landscapes and the wild inhabitants of the Hohe Tauern National Park Carinthia speak for themselves.
Mona Ramsenthaler and Lucas Hammerer
The artist and the chemist and biotechnologist have a common passion: photography. We often lack the words to depict the dimensions of nature, which is where the project idea "Man is a part and wonder of nature - We are ONE" came from. In the photographs, man is depicted as a small detail in relation to the mighty natural landscape of the Hohe Tauern National Park Salzburg and impressively conveys depth and emotion.
For the student, walking and wandering through nature in the National Park Thayatal had a special fascination - she observed the smallest details and tried to classify, record and process large impressions to scale. Her aim was to create snapshots in order to create an awareness of the versatility and vulnerability of nature. She dedicated her photo series to the big picture and extraordinary details in loving composition.
The mountain-experienced photographer let the impressive alpine landscape take effect on him in the Hohe Tauern National Park Tyrol. He took pictures of the mighty mountain massifs and their characteristic rock formations. However, he never lost sight of the small wonders of nature.
The auteur filmmaker wrote the script "ROOTS" (working title) together with her colleagues during her stay in the Gesäuse National Park. The story of how it came about during her stay was documented in detail. The result is a very entertaining short film and a personal diary that reports on their time together in the seclusion of the national park.
The biologist, who is active in the climate movement, wanted to spend as much time as possible outdoors in the National Park Thayatal, climbing heights, walking through the forest, listening to the sound of the river and observing animals. During her two-week stay, she wrote poems that are meant to evoke an emotional closeness to the wonders of nature.
The media design student focuses on documentary film as a tool for environmental protection. She is particularly concerned with the protection of water bodies. In her short documentary-style film, the focus is also on shots of and in the waters of the Donau-Auen National Park. The video is guided by National Park Ranger Christiane Mair, who talks about the special features of the National Park and its history. The film is intended to sensitise and inspire people for the large and small wonders of the water of the Danube floodplain.
Till Simons and Christoph Lomba
"A wonder of nature [...] is a very subjective description of sensory overpowering" - this realisation stands at the beginning of the audiovisual reportage by Till Simons and Christoph Lomba. The ethnographic filmmaker and cultural anthropologist and the social worker and nature educator focus on the different people and their approaches and perspectives on nature in the Kalkalpen National Park. Staff members, visitors and hut keepers tell of their personal perspectives, their individual wonders.
Child, family, nature and tranquillity - can this combination work? The photographer discovered the Donau-Auen National Park with her 4-year-old son Josef. This resulted in a photo series that is intended to bring families closer to nature as a space of mindfulness, tranquillity and awareness. The pictures convey tranquillity, because it is known that one can only recognise miracles in silence, and awe, because one is allowed to marvel at them.
in the nature
A large number of creative contributions have been collected in recent years through the media scholarship.
Through their works, the scholarship holders stimulate thought and invite a sometimes different view of our natural heritage.