William Eggleston: Outstanding Contribution to Photography

Untitled. 1971-1974 from Los Alamos - minnows sign

Regarded as one of the pioneers leading to the acceptance of colour photography as an artistic medium, William Eggleston is this year being recognised for his outstanding contribution to photography at the Sony World Photography Awards.

Born in 1939 in Memphis, Eggleston picked up his first camera, a Canon rangefinder, in 1957. His experiments with colour started in 1965 and his great breakthrough, and that of colour photography, came in 1976 when the Museum of Modern Art, New York, exhibited his first solo collection of colour photographs. Colour photography had moved from the realm of advertising to the world of art.

Astrid Merget, Creative Director of the World Photography Organisation says of Eggleston: 'William Eggleston is a without a doubt, one of the great pioneers of our time. His influence on colour photography and subsequently on many of today's most revered working photographers, is one to be admired, respected and awarded.'

The Wilson Centre for Photography has loaned a selection of Eggleston's prints for display at Somerset House as part of the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition from 26 April to 12 May 2013. The majority of these prints are from his Los Alamos and Dust Bells series and the 10.D.70.V1 portfolio and were taken between 1965 and 1980.

Mr Eggleston's award will be presented to him on Thursday 25 April at the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards Gala Ceremony.

Images are copyright Eggleston Artistic Trust and courtesy of Gagosian Gallery.