An award-giving ceremony was held in Samokov, Western Bulgaria, on Saturday to give out prizes in the national competition for photographic art named after the first Bulgarian photographer Atanas Karastoyanov, who was from Samokov.
The first prize went to Ivelina Berova, who was distinguished for her significant achievements in the photographic craftsmanship, outstanding creativity, and strong artistic impact. The second award was given to Krassimir Kunev, and the third, to Ilian Iliev.
The awards were given by Samokov Mayor Vladimir Georgiev who said that the idea of the competition is to pay tribute and recognition to Karastoyanov who laid the foundations of photography in Bulgaria. The award was established as a bridge between the present and the past, Georgiev said.
He said that the Dospevska House in Samokov is expected to be restored as a museum next year, where part of the project is the recreation of an authentic photography studio from the early 19th century.
The award-giving ceremony was attended by BTA Director General Kiril Valchev who congratulated the Samokov Town Hall for preserving and spreading the legacy of the person “without whom we would not have had the images of national heroes Vassil Levski, Stefan Karadja, Panayot Hitov, and others”.
Valchev said that BTA keeps the biggest archive of photos in Bulgaria, noting that the archive will be digitalized in a project funded under the National Recovery and Resilience Plan.
Valchev said that BTA will further increase its team of photo reporters, so that in the foreseeable future the news agency will have full-time photographers in every regional centre.
BTA is to open a national press club in Samokov in the coming weeks, Valchev said.