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SPELEOFOTOGRAFIA 2022 – evaluation

Cavers belong among the most curious people of our planet. The fact that they do not consider life situations as problems, but take them as challenges, define their nature. Perhaps this is due to the environment of their activities. After all, caves are a mystery, hidden in the darkness from our eyes. Secrets – everywhere you look.

How to reveal them and how to show them to the world? Photography is one of the essential ways to include each of the attributes of the mysterious dark underground world. Bringing light into the word poetically or illuminating it in the technical sense, is everything but easy. The world of caves is not only dark, but also quite complicated, difficult to move, requiring a coordinated team of experienced cavers.

The photographers of this year‘s contest perfectly demonstrate these ideas with their works. The intersection of various topics is not only the deep connection of the authors to the cave environment, but also to the friends who accompany them on their underground journey. Thanks to them, the photographs literally represent an imaginary voyage on the river Acheron, from which, there is always a return.

In 2022, within the 21st year of the photo contest with the theme of caves, Speleofotografia 2022, 46 photographers from 16 countries presented their works. They entered 264 photographs, again in two categories – Beauty of Caves and Speleomoment. The organizers were again the Slovak Museum of Nature Protection and Speleology, the State Nature Conservancy of the Slovak Republic – Slovak Caves Administration and the City of Liptovský Mikuláš.

The photographies entered in the contest via the online form were evaluated by an expert jury composed of Pavol Kočiš (Slovakia), Rémi Flament (France), Iñigo Gómez de Segura (Spain), Katsuji Yoshida (Japan) and Pavol Staník (Slovakia). The organizing committee was chaired by the director of the Slovak Museum of Nature Protection and Speleology – Ms. Karolína Balášková; the members were Michal Danko, Dagmar Lepišová, Mária Ošková and Lukáš Vlček (Slovak Speleological Society, Slovak Museum of Nature Protection and Speleology). The Speleofotografia 2022 catalogue consists of the hundred most successful photographs;

it´s printing was supported by the Žilina self-governing region.

The following results were announced at the opening ceremony in the Slovak Museum of Nature Preservation and Speleology in Liptovský Mikuláš on November 18, 2022:

Category: Beauty of Caves

The 3rd Prize

Cosmin Nistor & Cristian Țecu (Romania) – Castelbouc

The 2nd Prize

Cosmin Berghean (Romania) – Africa

The 1st Prize

Alexandre Lopez (France) – Jellyfish

Category:  Speleomoment

The 3rd Prize

Marek Csukás (Czech Republic) – Exploring a River

The 2nd Prize

Cosmin Nistor & Cristian Țecu (Romania) – Selfie

The 1st Prize

Martin Broen (USA) – Mayan Skull

Public Vote Prize

Geoffrey Couderc (France) – New Cave in Dordogne

Grand Prize

Martin Broen (USA) – Cave Diving

Congratulations to the awarded!


We thank the participants and with the invitation to preview the conetst catalogue, we also congratulate the authors of all selected TOP100 photos and look forward to Your participation in two years, at the Speleofotografia 2024 Contest!

In behalf of Speleofotografia 2022 Contest Organizing Committee

Lukáš Vlček


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