Nikon Photo of the Year Prize
“I want to hold her hand”
May 2020: Robyn Becker was in the final stages of breast and gastric cancer at home with her daughter Alex in a Melbourne under lockdown. Having been advised that Robyn did not have much time left, her sister Jennifer travelled from California to be with her, but was required to spend two weeks in hotel isolation.
Jennifer was given special leave to visit Robyn, but only for an hour at a time. “I want to be with her, I want to talk to her, I want to hold her hand, comfort her and hug her,” Jennifer said.
Robyn would pass away several weeks later.
Christopher Hopkins is a freelance photojournalist based in Melbourne. Since 2012, he has covered humanitarian issues globally and nationally with the intent of bringing human rights issues to the forefront of public awareness. His work is featured in publications including The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Guardian, Al Jazeera and The New York Times. In 2018 Hopkins was awarded the Walkley Award for Feature/Photographic Essay for his SBS-commissioned series My Name is Yunus.
Christopher Hopkins’ image of Robyn Becker and her family powerfully captured the emotion of 2020. The warmth and sense of connection while we are all still in this moment of borders and barriers is just so powerful. Beautifully composed with great emotion, this is tenderness.