Recent Middlesex University photography graduate, Will Lakin, is taking the industry by storm after being selected for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2013 exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery, being highlighted by the British Journal of Photography and being hand-picked as young talent to showcase his collection at a high-profile exhibition in Paris. He will be exhibiting at the National Gallery alongside fellow Middlesex student Tereza Červeňová who has also been selected for the prestigious Taylor Wessing prize.
Will, who only graduated in BA Photography in July, has been attracting wide-spread attention with his final year photography collection shot in Great Yarmouth. His photo titled 'Martyn, Sean and Jacob' of three young men he randomly came across on his shoot is currently being displayed in the National Gallery, London, as part of the Taylor Wessing exhibition, a prestigious prize that celebrates excellence in portrait photography. From the work displayed there, Will was then picked as one of the British Journal of Photography's Top 12 photographers.
He is accompanied by Middlesex BA Photography student Tereza Červeňová whose work has also been selected for the Taylor Wessing prize. The third year student's photo titled 'Sisters' is of three young girls at a swimming pool in her native country Slovakia.
The talented photographers will see their work in the National Gallery until February 2014 after being selected for the exhibition from more than 5,000 submissions from across the globe. The competition attracts entries from top professionals worldwide, who hope to be part of the exhibition in one of the leading UK galleries for three months. Will and Tereza become the seventh and eighth Middlesex University students to have their work selected for the elite prize in five years.
Middlesex photography student Tereza Červeňová said: "I'm very excited and proud to be exhibiting in such a respected gallery and competition."
Will's Great Yarmouth shot collection was also selected as a 2013 Laureates by SFR Jeunes Talents to feature in Paris Photo, an esteemed international photography exhibition at the historic Grand Palais at the Champs-Élysées in France from 14-17 November. In addition, he has now been invited to display his collection in Switzerland early 2014 at the 'Nuit de la photo' exhibition.
Middlesex graduate Will Lakin said: "It's such a privilege to be exhibiting in the National Gallery. As a portrait photographer, it's the best place to be. Paris Photo was also amazing to be featured in as the calibre of those exhibited there included August Sander, a famous German photographer whose work sold for one million Euros at the fair!"
Michael Bradley, Director of Communications Arts courses at Middlesex, said: "Will Lakin's selection as one of only five 2013 Laureates in the SFR Jeunes Talents on exhibition at the recent Paris Photo Fair was well deserved. Throughout his final year he worked extremely hard documenting a world few others look at. I am delighted to see that Will is getting the recognition he richly deserves."
Earlier this year Will's collection also received the influential artistic award 'Yellow Pencil' in the D&AD Student Awards 2013. His photo 'Martyn, Sean and Jacob' most successfully fit the brief to 'take a photograph which encapsulates this particular moment in youth culture'.
Middlesex University Head of Department for Visual Arts Phil Healey said: "Will's work in the area of documentary and urban portrait is beautifully composed, fresh and infused with an understanding and appreciation of the people, their dreams and their challenges."
Top: Will Lakin with his work at SFR Jeunes Talents - Paris Photo
Bottom: Tereza Červeňová with her image 'Sisters'
Watch our graduation video where Will Lakin talks about his experience at Middlesex.