• Photo: Stephan Keppel

  • Photo: Roderik Henderson

  • Photo: Matthieu Litt

  • Photo: Martine Stig

  • Photo: Maarten Tromp

  • Photo: Jordi Ruiz Cicera

  • Photo: Antoinette Nausikaä

  • Photo: Géraldine Jeanjean

Stephan Keppel winner Somfy Photography Award 2020

The Somfy Photography Award 2020 is awarded to Stephan Keppel for his new work ‘Fall out’. The international jury chose his installation from new work by nine nominated photographers. Keppel photographed the graffiti and slogans spray-painted underneath the Vondelbridge in Amsterdam, which served as an atomic bomb shelter during the Cold War. Keppel used the images to create new graphic works of art.

Stephan Keppel received, on behalf of Somfy Netherlands, from the founder of this photography prize, Huub Koene, the Award and a check for € 15,000. The second prize (€ 5,000) went to Géraldine Jeanjean for her installation “Dehors”. The award ceremony took place in Rotterdam on 23 October.

“Fall Out is a monumental, nuanced and strong graphic interpretation of a bunker. With printing machines, Keppel creates a multi-layered world where surfaces, objects and structures from different periods of time  come to life in the present. You can smell the bunker. A beautiful interpretation of the theme Gimme Shelter.”, the jury said. “Glass is given a symbolic meaning with great poetical force in Jeanjean’s pentatych Dehors. The work is an elegant visual play between inside and outside.”, according to the jury.

The exhibition Somfy Photography Award 2020 | Gimme Shelter, with work of the nine finalists, can be seen until December 6, 2020 in the Nederlands Fotomuseum.

Stephan Keppel

Winner Stephan Keppel

Géraldine Jeanjean

Runner up Geraldine Jeanjean

Unique photography competition

The Somfy Photography Award is an original photography competition, now in its second edition. Nine shortlisted top photographers will create unique work based on the theme ‘Gimme shelter’ and compete for first and second place.

The Somfy Photography Award is an opportunity for professional photographers to create work on a specific subject, based on their own project proposals. They also have the chance to win a substantial cash prize and are able to present their work at important cultural venues in Paris, Rotterdam and Arles.

The Somfy Photography Award is grateful for the support of
the Nederlands Fotomuseum.

Nederlands Fotomuseum

2020 theme: GIMME SHELTER

The Somfy Photography Award is a way for Somfy to emphasise the contribution it makes to people’s comfort and well-being in non-residential buildings such as schools, universities, hospitals, offices, airports, and railway stations, and to do this in a perceptive and insightful, inspiring and creative way.

The theme of the Somfy Photography Award 2020 is Gimme shelter. The Somfy Group makes use of invisible technology to ensure the well-being and comfort of building users. Somfy also ensures that these buildings use energy sustainably. Comfort, well-being and sustainability are the three most important qualities that Somfy realises in buildings. They are The Art of Somfy and the most important of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

Read more

Gimme shelter is an overarching, all-embracing fundamental need for people and animals. It means protection, shelter, safety and comfort. Gimme shelter is manifested not only in buildings, schools, hospitals, factories and offices, in mansions and flats, but also in the cardboard box of the homeless person, the embrace of lovers, the mother who cherishes her child.

A selection committee of international photography experts will assess all of the submissions and project proposals to narrow the field down to a shortlist of nine finalists. These finalists will have the opportunity to develop new work on the theme. The works produced will be exhibited in the Nederlands Fotomuseum in Rotterdam.

Frits Gierstberg (Nederlands Fotomuseum) is a curator and the chair of the selection committee and jury. The other jury and selection committee members will also be renowned photographers and photography specialists.

After hanging, the work will be assessed by a jury of internationally renowned photography professionals. The winner will be presented with a €15,000 cash prize and the runner-up will receive €5,000. These prizes will be awarded during the private view at the Nederlands Fotomuseum.

All shortlisted photographers will be given €2,000 to cover production expenses. Somfy will cover the costs of presenting the photographs for exhibition, for example printing, enlarging and framing costs.


Art Talk

Nominees 2020
Nederlands FotomuseumFred Ernst

Press Releases


Roderik Henderson

Roderik Henderson

Géraldine Jeanjean

Géraldine Jeanjean

Stephan Keppel

Stephan Keppel

Matthieu Litt

Matthieu Litt

Antoinette Nausikaä

Antoinette Nausikaä

Martine Stig

Martine Stig

Dustin Thierry

Dustin Thierry

Maarten Tromp

Maarten Tromp

Jordi Ruiz Cirera

Jordi Ruiz Cirera

Who, what, where and when


Somfy is a publicly listed company with branches in more than sixty countries worldwide. Somfy develops, manufactures, installs, and maintains unique equipment for a range of purposes including light transmission in buildings. This technique is unique and ubiquitous; its effects are obvious but often invisible. To bring it into sharper focus, talented photographers working in Europe were invited to create a photographic portrayal of what Somfy creates, based on their own individual project motivations around the theme of ‘Gimme shelter’.

Exhibition and award ceremony

The Somfy Photography Award (SPA) 2020 with new work by the nine nominated photographers will be exhibited in Rotterdam. The candidates are currently making new photos based on: ‘Gimme Shelter’. The work they are creating for the Award will be send in and brought together in a group exhibition at the Nederlands Fotomuseum from 2 October. From this collection of work, a jury of international experts will choose a first and second place winner. The prizes are fifteen thousand and five thousand euros respectively. A budget of two thousand euros per photographer is available for the creation of their new work. The winners will be announced at the Nederlands Fotomuseum on 23 October 2020.

Announcing the winners

On 23 October 2020, a jury of international experts consisting of Frits Gierstberg (chairman), Menno Kooistra (architect, Elephant), Dana Lixenberg (photographer), Thomas Seelig (curator/head of the photo collection of Museum Folkwang in Essen, Germany) and Stephan Vanfleteren (photographer) will announce the first and second prize winners.

This will take place in the Nederlands Fotomuseum, where all of the nominees’ work will be on display in the Somfy Photography Award 2020 | Gimme Shelter exhibition.


Arles – France

Launch of the Somfy Photography Award 2020

Launch in Arles

The Somfy Photography Award 2020 was officially kicked off at the international photography festival ‘Les Rencontres d’Arles’ in Arles in the south of France.

Paris – France

Photographers shortlisted to take part in Somfy Photography Award 2020 are announced at Paris Photo.

Shortlisted photographers announced


The nine photographers shortlisted for participation in the Somfy Photography Award 2020 were announced during Paris Photo in November 2019.

Rotterdam – the Netherlands

The work will be exhibited at the Nederlands Fotomuseum from 2 oktober 2020.


The work will be exhibited at the Nederlands Fotomuseum from 2 oktober 2020.

  • Nederlands Fotomuseum


Somfy Nederland became a corporate partner of the Nederlands Fotomuseum in 2019. The Somfy Photography Award is the main expression of this partnership. The effects of light and how it can be used are the key points of interest for both the Nederlands Fotomuseum and Somfy Nederland. This is a telling illustration of their symbolic connection.

Somfy is working on innovative, technical products that operate everything related to natural light and light management in buildings, and thus contributes to the comfort and well-being of people even though the majority of them are unaware of it. And yet, people are at the heart of the development, production, and application of our technology, which is also what we want to communicate with unique photographic images that showcase our technology to those who use it in an inspiring way.  With the launch of the Somfy Photography Award, we’ve created an international photography platform and, thanks to our collaboration with the Nederlands Fotomuseum, we look forward to an optimal result.”

Sven van Witzenburg (CEO Somfy Nederland BV).

Somfy Photography Award 2018

A look back

The first national exhibition for the Somfy Photography Award was held in January and February 2018, on the first floor of the busiest station in the Netherlands, Utrecht Centraal (with >280,000 people passing through each day). It featured work by ten shortlisted photographers on the theme ‘My Space, My Place’.

Jaap Scheeren won the Somfy Photography Award 2018 with his ‘In Memoriam of a Friend’. Second prize went to Thomas Kuijpers with his installation ‘Rehab’. For more information on the 2018 participants, location, selection committee and jury members, click here.

See a video impression below.

Comfort, Well-Being, Sustainability:
The Art of Somfy

It has been shown that people feel happier and more comfortable in buildings that are equipped with Somfy technology. That’s because the technology that Somfy develops and implements in public buildings ensures the comfort of the people who use them, thanks to excellent light and temperature control. Users of these buildings have higher job satisfaction, are more productive, feel healthier, have decreased absenteeism due to illness, and are better able to concentrate. This also has a positive impact on employees, school and university students, patients, travellers, and other people who use these buildings for shorter or longer periods of time.

Overall, this means that Somfy offers comfort, well-being and sustainability. These physical, emotional and mental values ​​are fundamental concepts in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.



Louis Carpano

Somfy’s story started back in 1868 when Louis Carpano, a watchmaker in the French town of Cluses, began producing parts for the watchmaking industry. As a supplier to the Swiss watch industry, he laid the foundations of quality for what was eventually to become Somfy, almost a century later. Quality is the foundation of all Somfy’s products. The development of the business under Carpano’s management points to a combination of innovation and entrepreneurship while the geographical location still determines many of the company’s cultural and social aspects.




Somfy is a leading developer and manufacturer of systems that regulate natural light in buildings – but that’s just one of the company’s activities. The group is also a leader in the field of automating access technology (e.g. automatic doors, gates and windows) and home automation. In addition, it is a leading business in the development of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which appliances are able to communicate with each other; even entire cities can be automated in this way. These specialised developments and virtually invisible solutions can be summed up as ‘The Art of Somfy’.


About somfy


Somfy is one of the few players in the world that develops, manufactures, constructs, installs and fine-tunes both motors and controls. This makes Somfy’s offering difficult for competitors to replicate, while Somfy’s solutions have demonstrable added value for building users.

Somfy’s technology means that people experience a higher degree of comfort and well-being. Another important benefit is that the use of Somfy technology means a drastic reduction in energy consumption (cooling and/or heating). Somfy is one of the world’s leading companies in this field.