Born in Wroclaw, Poland in 1972, photojournalist Mikolaj Nowacki focuses on documenting human relationships with the natural environment, especially with water. He also documents and reports on social, cultural and economic issues around the world including, but not limited to, civil unrest, Human Rights and Climate Change.
A graduate of the University of Wroclaw, Nowacki earned his law degree in 1997. He then began pursuing his Ph.D. in International Space Law. He left law to focus full time on his career as a photographer.
Between 2004–2011, Nowacki worked as a photojournalist for two of Poland’s most influential daily newspapers, Gazeta Wyborcza and the Polska Times.
Nowacki’s photos and photo essays have been published since by The Sunday Times Magazine, New York Times Lens, Le Monde, Stern, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, National Geographic (Poland), National Geographic Traveler (Poland), National Geographic Proof, CNN Photos, Burn Magazine and many others internationally.
In 2012 he was nominated for the prestigious Prix Pictet Award and since 2014, he has been a photographer for National Geographic Poland.
He has been a recipient of numerous awards and been shortlisted as a finalist by some of the most esteemed organizations and photography forums in the world to include Sony World Photography Awards, NPPA Best of Photojournalism, Grand Press Photo (Poland), BZWBK Press Photo (Poland), Paris Photography Prize (Px3), Outdoor Photographer of the Year and others.
From 2011–2013, Nowacki was selected to participate in the highly competitive VII Mentor Program with VII Photo Agency in New York City.
In 2011, his work was featured in the VII Photo Agency group exhibition, iSee that opened at the VII Gallery and went on to show at the Griffin Museum of Photography in Boston, Massachusetts, and in 2013 at the Museum of Art Queretaro, Mexico during the Queretaro Photo Festival.
In 2013, Nowacki’s critically–acclaimed solo exhibition, Odra, opened at the VII Gallery in New York. In 2014, Odra was also exhibited in China, as part of the Xishuangbanna Photo Festival, where Nowacki received a Nomination along with ten others for Best Photographer.
Between 2014–2015, Odra was projected during the Angkor Photo Festival in Cambodia, Auckland Festival of Photography in New Zealand, and the Suwon International Photo Festival in Suwon City, South Korea. In 2016, Odra was exhibited in China during the Colorful Guizhou–China Original Ecology International Photography Exhibition.
Nowacki became a European Panasonic Lumix Ambassador in 2015, and in 2018, he was named The Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2017.
He is available for international assignments, collaborations and projects worldwide.
Photography Achievements, Honors and Awards
2020 – National Geographic Poland, Photographer of the Month.
2019 – The Elements: Water, Group Exhibition, National Geographic Poland Photographers, Old Mine (Stara Kopalnia) Science and Art Center, Walbrzych, Poland.
2019 – Grand Press Photo, Poland–Second Prize, Documentary Long Term Project.
2019 – Grand Press Photo, Poland–Third Place, Sports Category, Singles.
2018– Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2017, Winner .
2018 – Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2017, First Prize.
2018 – Grand Press Photo, Poland, Finalist.
2017– BZWBK Press Photo, Poland, First Prize, Nature Category, Singles.
2015 – Selected as a Panasonic Lumix European Ambassador.
2014 – Odra book is published to critical acclaim.
2014 – Grand Press Photo, Poland, Finalist, Stories.
2014 – BZWBK Press Photo, Poland, First Place, Stories.
2014 – BZWBK Press Photo, Poland, Third Place, Singles.
2014 – NPPA Best of Photojournalism, Honorable Mention, Singles.
2014 – Sony World Photography Awards, Finalist, Story.
2014 – Odra Exhibition – Xishuangbanna Photo Festival, China. Nominated, Best Photographers of the Festival.
2013 – National Geographic Photo Contest, Polish Edition, Special Mention, Singles.
2013 – National Geographic Photo Contest, Polish Edition, Special Mention, Story.
2013 – „Odra” Solo Exhibition at VII Gallery, New York, New York.
2013 – i.conography – Group Exhibition with VII Photo Agency, Photo Festival Queretaro 2013, Museum of Art Queretaro, Mexico.
2012 – Wine Photo, International Photo Contest, Italy– Special Mention, story.
2012 – Prix Pictet Award, Nominee.
2012 – Grand Press Photo, Poland– finalist.
2011– iSee – Group Exhibition with VII Photo Agency at the Griffin Museum of Photography in Boston, Massachusetts, United States.
2011– 2013 Mentor Program, VII Photo Agency.
2010 – BZWBK Press Photo, Poland, First Prize, Story.
2010 – Grand Press Photo, Poland, Third Prize, Singles.
2009 – BZWBK Press Photo, Poland, Second Prize, Singles.
2009 – Grand Press Photo, Poland, Finalist, Singles.
2008 – Newsreportaz, photo competition of Newsweek, Poland, Special Mention, Story.
2008 – Best Edit, Internal National Geographic Magazine Award.
2007– National Geographic Photo Contest, Polish Edition, Finalist.