A total of 10,367 photos have been submitted to free-to-use photography app Agora, but only one photo has been voted ‘World’s Best Photo of #Architecture2020’ by the global community: congratulations to @trantuanviet who has won the competition with an aerial shot of Vietnam’s most famous footbridge, combining unique design and poetic scenery.
#Architecture2020 is a spectacle about the beauty that results from the interaction between light and volumes. The contrast between chaos and order, nature and the artificial, matter and emptiness. Particles of photons bouncing off constructed volumes portrayed by the world's great photographers.
Octavi Royo, Agora's CEO & Co-Founder
Winner: 'Golden Bridge' by @trantuanviet (Vietnam)
Location: Danang, Vietnam
The Golden Bridge has been built at around 1,400 meters above sea level. It is divided into eight spans (the longest one is equal to 20m), with a total length of 148,6 meters. This impressive architecture work has the peculiarity of being held by two giant concrete hands, representing the Mountain God’s hands.
@trantuanviet (Vietnam), #Architecture2020 Hero
Discover the #Architecture2020 finalist entries:
'Urban Grid | Barcelona' by @leemumford8 (UK)
Location: Barcelona, Spain
I wanted to get up high and show the unique pattern from a different angle. It’s beauty that can be hard to imagine from the street level. This was an early start, to capture the magical city under some nice morning light. The previous days before this shoot, it was cloudy so I waited for a clear day to capture the light kissing the buildings.
'Bottle Opener and Needle' by @panvelvet (Russia)
Location: Shanghai, China
'Clifton suspension bridge' by @tom.bridges (UK)
Location: Bristol, UK
Once or twice a year the weather conditions produce this amazing scene of the fog passing under the suspension bridge. I've lived next to this bridge for 2 years but I never managed to capture the image. Within a month from moving house, and living over an hour away the conditions looked to align. So I traveled down 3 days in a row and on the final day managed to get it!
'Colorful architecture in Tokyo' by @alvarovaliente_ (Spain)
Location: Tokyo, Japan
This building looks like another building from the outside, but if you head inside it's an explosion of colors! It was such a great discovery. I want to transmit the same feeling, an explosion of joy and color in the eye, and the harmony between that chaotic color range and the straight leading lines of the building.
'Pahtotharmyar' by @ayechantun (Myanmar)
Location: Pahtotharmyar Temple, Bagan, Myanmar
Every day, novices living near the temple pay their homage to the Buddha statue. The photo required a meticulous organization because the sun shines through during a very short moment.
'Low-income housing and old design' by @nguyenhuuthanhhai (Vietnam)
Location: Hoang Liet Ward, Hoang Mai District, Hanoi, Vietnam
The safety of these old apartments is very alarming due to the weak infrastructures and the dense population. I flew my drone near to the scene to take some close-ups shots, which was risky because the fire was expanding very quickly.
'Running under the storto' by @marcotagliarino (Italy)
Location: Milan, Italy
This is the Generali building in Milan, called "lo storto" for its shape. I wanted to underline the integration between the new architecture of my city and the respect of the environment with this runner passing by. It was difficult to choose the perfect point of view and the right storytelling.
'Close Quarters' by @_kennyc_ (UK)
Location: Quarry Bay, Hong Kong
'Dense' is the word I'd use to describe Hong Kong's architecture. Its skyline, bustling streets, night-markets... all so incredibly dense. It’s a beautiful display of contemporary architecture where both modern and functionalist approaches juxtapose each other. While Hong Kong’s sci-fi-like cityscape is a spectacle to behold (especially during ‘A Symphony of Lights’), it’s the older, grittier, and seemingly never-ending look of its apartment blocks that really drew my attention. These older, functionalist style buildings can be found all around the city; however, it’s perhaps best found in the Quarry Bay area. I spent a couple of hours getting lost in this part of the city, getting carried away with the different colors and patterns of all the various buildings. For me, no other picture I took sums up Hong Kong as a city better than this one.
'Castlemania!' by @moodfella (Germany)
Location: Eltz Castle, Mayen-Koblenz, Germany
'Matsumoto Castle in the land of the rising sun' by @janreyem (Germany)
Location: Matsumoto, Japan
'Arundel Folly' by @bear.martin (New Zealand)
Location: Hiorne Tower Arundel West Sussex, UK
I have been experimenting with light painting, and I thought this folly built in 1787 would make a great subject to be painted. This photo was taken at 8 pm on a very dark but clear winter night. The mini castle is lite using a drone with two Lume cubes circling the structure which was then removed in post-processing.
@bear.martin (New Zealand)
'Hong Kong from above' by @michelle.wandering (Netherlands)
Location: Hong Kong
'Low fog in Moscow' by @poletaev.photo (Russia)
Location: Ostankino district, Moscow, Russia
Low fog sunrises are not so commonly seen in Moscow. I woke up around 3 a.m. and saw the fog outside my window, so I decided it was a good moment to fly my drone. The fog was very dense, so I didn’t even see the tower itself from my vantage point. But when I took off my drone, I saw this striking picture: a thin sky needle above the sea of fog, with a shadow that makes it endless. It was the best sunrise of that summer.
'A cold winter day' by @lucacornago (Italy)
Location: Neuschwanstein Castle, Schwangau, Germany
My hands were frozen because of the freezing wind, but it was all worth seeing such an epic sunset. The architecture of this castle is stunning, it reminded me of my childhood and Walt Disney. There were a lot of kids when I visited, I still remember the expression of surprise on their faces observing this beautiful castle.
'One of the best moments of my life' by @talhaarshad124 (Pakistan)
Location: Mecca, Saudi Arabia
Every year millions of pilgrims head to Mecca, the holiest city for Muslims, for the Hajj pilgrimage which is one of the five pillars of Islam. When I went there, I could feel Allah at every heartbeat. It's a place of unity, equality, and peace. I consider myself so lucky that I experienced this beautiful moment.
'Sharjah' by @joao.galamba (Portugal)
Location: Sharjah, UAE
The Scroll monument, a Gerry Judah’s creation, is a contemporary interpretation of the ancient Arabic scrolls – a single, 36m high, spiraling sculpture that loops towards the sky. The Scroll monument is a true spiral with no connection between the loops as they pass each other. At points, there is no more than 150 mm (six inches) between the loops. The structure itself is extremely light and extremely stiff, so as to counterbalance the desert winds. The design and inspiration are representative of a celebration of reading and the power of books to unite people, in a year when Sharjah was designated the World Book Capital, by UNESCO.
'Windows' by @jaywu10 (Singapore)
'Chinese New Year in Singapore' by @ghislainfave (France)
Location: Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, Chinatown, Singapore
This was taken from a condo building just behind the temple. I wanted to show the contrast between this place of worship and the modern district of Singapore in the background.
'Petare' by @donaldobarros (Venezuela)
Location: Petare, Caracas, Venezuela
'Rainy day long exposure' by @zheqian (China)
Location: Market st & Grant Ave, San Francisco, USA
Rainy days are always more appealing to me comparing to those sunny ones. I remember it was a normal sunny day down here in the south bay; around 7 pm I started to hear the raindrops tapping my window. So, randomly I decided to drive up to the city to try out my luck. I knew exactly where I was going because I've been to that location during San Francisco's pride parade. That crossroad had been in my head ever since. I spent about 30mins standing in the rain next to the tripod. But it was all worth it. What I was trying to deliver is the tranquility and quietness of the city when it is covered by falling rain, which is the kinda beauty I appreciate a lot.
'Surrounded by 72 Buddha statues - The Great Candi Borobudur' by @chaksproject (Indonesia)
Location: Borobudur, Magelang, Indonesia
'Inception' by @Borsch (Russia)
Location: Petrovskiy Track Palace, Moscow, Russia
Peter's Palace is located at the gates of Moscow and was erected in the years 1776-1780, serving as a residence for noble people after a long journey from St Petersburg to Moscow. I wanted to capture its amazing architecture using a technique called “Inception”. There are 9 photos from different angels manually merged into one photo.
'Painted Hall' by @theliamman (UK)
Location: Old Royal Naval College, London, UK
'Cairo' by @banudiker (Turkey)
Location: Cairo, Egypt
There was wonderful weather and the sky was clear and blue. The rustiness of the building was the only different color in the picture, because the reflection on the windows reflected the same blue as the sky. When I realized this, I thought the contrast was beautiful and I took the photo.
'Aerial view' by @phamhuytrung (Vietnam)
Location: Hue, Vietnam
This floating restaurant located on the Huong river can be better admired from above.
'The Vessel' by @imkaphotos (Germany)
Location: New York City, USA
'Lonely house' by @artempikalov (Russia)
Location: Crimea, Russia
I wanted to convey the peace of being in such a secluded place in solitude. In the current bustling rhythm of life, it is sometimes important to spend time in silence, disconnecting from gadgets and social networks. On the day I took this photo, I found out that I would finally become a dad!
'Light Through the Dragon’s Gate' by @blairsugarman1 (UK)
Location: Hong Kong
These quirky cut-outs have long been rumored to exist for purposes of Feng Shui, an ancient Chinese system of summoning happiness and fortune through an individual's surroundings. Such holes, it is said, act as gateways for "spirit dragons" that reside in the hills behind the towers -- blocking the dragons' path to the water could bring misfortune to local residents. At this time of day, the light was perfect as the sun sets - the key emotion I was looking to evoke is curiosity and wonder at the uniqueness of Hong Kong building structures.
'Tulum' by @blakehobson (Canada)
Location: Tulum, Mexico
'Urban geometry' by @inchaseofbeauty (Russia)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Here's one of Moscow's courtyards from above. There are different areas to work out, play with the kids, or even play table tennis. I arrived at this place too early, so I decided to wait for a few hours. I wanted to see this sunlight on the ground in the best position. While I was waiting for the best time I had some food, take some conversations with people and I take a look around me. When I started to fly then so many little kids ran to me. It was really funny to see their wondering faces and I let them see their home from above. They liked it and I liked to see them happy.
'Flat iron building' by @øystein (Norway)
Location: New York City, USA
I wanted to enhance the special architecture of the Flat Iron building by using a wide-angle lens and a very low perspective, using the inbuilt distortion when tilting the camera down. Laying flat on the pavement in the busy NYC streets was very stressful, so when I started moving around, I had forgotten to close my camera bag and my 70-200 mm fell on the ground. This picture cost me about 1,200$ for the repair on a lens I didn’t even use!
'The first jummah prayers during Ramadan' by @kazijewel (Bangladesh)
Location: Baitul Mukarram Mosque, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Baitul Mukarram (The Holy House) is the national mosque of Bangladesh: it has a capacity of 30,000 people and is the 10th biggest mosque in the world. The mosque is constantly getting overcrowded, especially during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. The Bangladeshi government had to add extensions to the mosque, thus increasing the capacity to at least 40,000. The mosque has several modern architectural features whilst preserving the traditional principles of Mughal architecture. Baitul Mukarram’s large cube shape was modeled in honor of the Ka’abah in Mecca, making it a noticeable structure being unlike any other mosque in Bangladesh.
'Central in Hong Kong' by @jackyy_wch (Hong Kong)
Location: Hong Kong
'Stupa homage' by @minzaw (Myanmar)
Location: Mingun Pahtodawgyi, Myanmar
Stupas are one of the most recognizable forms of Buddhist architecture. It generally takes the form of a hemisphere, although this shape may vary by country. Pilgrims worship at a stupa by walking around its base outside, usually in the clockwise direction. The massive crack you can notice in the middle of this Stupa was caused by an earthquake.
'Fort Alexander 1' by @nikybwd (Russia)
Location: Kronstadt, Saint Petersburg, Russia
Fort Alexander 1 is a naval fortress on an artificial island located in the Gulf of Finland, near St. Petersburg and Kronstadt. From 1899 to 1917, the fort housed a research laboratory on plague and other bacterial diseases. By 1983, the fort was stripped of its fixtures and abandoned. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Fort Alexander was a popular location for rave parties.
'The roofs in an old village' by @thanhtoanphotographer (Vietnam)
Location: Thanh Hoa, Vietnam
'Sathorn bridge' by @gennys1210 (Italy)
Location: Sathorn footbridge, Bangkok, Thailand
I really love architecture, so I wanted to photograph some of the modern buildings in Bangkok during my trip there. The Sathorn bridge caught most of my attention. I love its lines and curves, I just wanted to make the most out of it enhancing the shapes with some distortion, taking the picture from below. I spent a few hours there that day, went from daylight to evening, without even getting tired. I found that place to be very inspiring and hope I gave it good justice.
'Infinity and beyond' by @i__abdullah (Pakistan)
Location: Lahore, Pakistan
'Modern lookups' by @seplb (Austria)
Location: Vienna, Austria
When taking photos I sometimes like to change my perspective. So, lookups are the perfect thing to do! I’d seen some shots from this place before, but I never knew exactly where it was so I had to ask a lot of people to find out. It’s one of Vienna’s most classic lookups in the city center.
'The reflection of the city' by @caokynhan (Vietnam)
Location: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
I like to capture the reflection of buildings across the water. From this lake location, you have an outstanding view of HCMC's District 1. I got eaten alive by mosquitoes while taking this picture, don't forget to apply mosquito repellent if you ever go to this lake!
'Stairway to Heaven' by @wunderbilder (Germany)
Location: Hamburg, Germany
I was in Hamburg for 2 days and spent my time photographing the beautiful stairs across the city. I like such abstract pictures where you don't immediately grasp what it is.
'Water' by @siang425 (Malaysia)
'Ciudad de las ciencias' by @ltalon (Spain)
Location: Valencia, Spain
If you come to Valencia, a visit to the City of Arts and Sciences is a must. I took this photo at sunset, where I took advantage of the beautiful natural light and the artificial lights coming from the building.
'Safdarjung's Tomb' by @ghumakkadpandit (India)
Location: Safdarjung tomb, Dehli, India
Safdarjung's Tomb is a sandstone and marble mausoleum built in 1754 in the late Mughal Empire style for Nawab Safdarjung. Nightlife photography has always fascinated me because it is one of the less explored areas in photography. The government of India recently worked upon lightning these monuments, so the night light brings all the details of the architecture which otherwise is hidden with the daylight.
'Landmark 81' by @azimronnie (Bangladesh)
Location: Landmark 81, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Landmark 81 is a neo-futurist skyscraper completed in 2018. It's the highest building in HCMC, with an architectural height of 461.2 meters. There's an observation deck on the 79th floor with amazing views of Vietnam's capital city.
'Parking' by @maazzzius (Spain)
Location: Barcelona, Spain
I was walking around Barcelona, my home city when I came across this particular building. I decided to go inside and have a look. After reaching the top of the building, I understood its particular shape. It reminded me of how important it is to look for different points of view when photographing something: the outcome can change radically if we give it another perspective.
'The chair' by @edgar_mtz (Mexico)
Location: Museo Rufino Tamayo, Ciudad de México, Mexico
This is a spontaneous photo: the museum's guard went to the bathroom, so I took my chance to photograph his chair.
'Monument Sunset' by @marfle (Germany)
Location: Emperor William Monument, Porta Westfalica, Germany
'I want to believe' by @photosbyaadil (Pakistan)
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