Tenth World Press Photo award for Jodi Bieber

Portrait for Time Magazine is named photo of 2010.

An image captured by South African photographer Jodi Bieber has been named World Press Photo of 2010. The picture, of Bibi Aisha from Oruzugan Province, Afghanistan, featured on the 1 August cover of Time magazine. The photo also won first prize in the Portraits Singles competition. It depicts the 18-year-old Aisha before she underwent surgery to reconstruct nose and ears which had been sliced off by her husband, who was enforcing a Taliban-administered verdict.

A special mention was made of photographs taken by the Chilean miners who were trapped underground for 69 days in 2010.

Commenting on the series of 12 photos, jury member Abir Abdullah said: "[I]t brings us into a new era that challenges professionals, and this is a good example of a photo from a place where a photojournalist could not possibly have been."

The exhibition will first be shown in Oude Kerk in Amsterdam, from 22 April, before commencing a worldwide tour. A full list of competition winners in all categories can be found on the World Press Photo website.

Jodi Bieber's series "Real Beauty" will be shown as part of the Victoria & Albert Museum's forthcoming exhibition "Figures and Fictions: Contemporary South African Photography", which opens in April.

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Harry Styles: What can three blank Instagram posts tell us about music promotion?

Do the One Direction star’s latest posts tell us about the future of music promotion in the social media age - or take us back to a bygone era?

Yesterday, Harry Styles posted three identical, captionless blank images to Instagram. He offered no explanation on any other social network, and left no clue via location serves or tagged accounts as to what the pictures might mean. There was nothing about any of the individual images that suggested they might have significance beyond their surface existence.

And, predictably, they brought in over a million likes – and thousands of Styles fans decoding them with the forensic dedication of the cast of Silent Witness.

Of course, the Instagrams are deliberately provocative in their vagueness. They reminded me of Robert Rauschenberg’s three-panelled White Painting (1951), or Robert Ryman’s Untitled, three square blank canvases that hang in the Pompidou Centre. The composer John Cage claimed that the significance of Rauschenberg’s White Paintings lay in their status as receptive surfaces that respond to the world around them. The significance of Styles’s Instagrams arguably, too, only gain cultural relevance as his audience engages with them.

So what did fans make of the cryptic posts? Some posited a modelling career announcement would follow, others theorised that it was a nod to a Taylor Swift song “Blank Space”, and that the former couple would soon confirm they were back together. Still more thought this suggested an oncoming solo album launch.

You can understand why a solo album launch would be on the tip of most fans’ tongues. Instagram has become a popular platform for the cryptic musical announcement — In April, Beyoncé teased Lemonade’s world premiere with a short Instagram video – keeping her face, and the significance behind the title Lemonade, hidden.

Creating a void is often seen as the ultimate way to tease fans and whet appetites. In June last year, The 1975 temporarily deleted their Instagram, a key platform in building the band’s grungy, black and white brand, in the lead up to the announcement of their second album, which involved a shift in aesthetic to pastel pinks and bright neons.

The Weekend wiped his, too, just last week – ahead of the release of his new single “Starboy”. Blank Instagrams are popular across the network. Jaden Smith has posted hundreds of them, seemingly with no wider philosophical point behind them, though he did tweet in April last year, “Instagram Is A BlackHole Of Time And Energy.”

The motive behind Harry’s blank posts perhaps seems somewhat anticlimactic – an interview with magazine Another Man, and three covers, with three different hairstyles, to go along with it. But presumably the interview coincides with the promotion of something new – hopefully, something other than his new film Dunkirk and the latest update on his beloved tresses. In fact, those blank Instagrams could lead to a surprisingly traditional form of celebrity announcement – one that surfaces to the world via the print press.

Anna Leszkiewicz is a pop culture writer at the New Statesman.