15/10/2014 3:42 PM IST | Updated 07/12/2017 3:50 AM IST

Photography Competition Reveals The Radically Different Ways Humans Work Around The World

For one person, going to work means putting on a suit, grabbing a briefcase and heading onto public transportation. For another, heading to the job involves giving massages to shirtless customers on a sunny city street, or separating fish into baskets at a crowded market. The many places we live and the many ways we work come to light in the crop of winning images from the CBRE Urban Photographer of the Year 2014 competition.


Saumalya Ghosh. Indian Fish Market. Top view of a crowded roadside fish market in north Kolkata. Kolkata, India

The theme of this year's competition, "Cities at Work," attracted 11,500 photographic submissions from 79 countries around the world. The winning image, titled "Masks of Society" and submitted by German photographer Marius Vieth, depicts a woman laying out jewelry in a display case, her face caught in a particularly strange reflection of a decorative mask hung just beside her. "Vieth’s image captures a perfect moment where someone is fully immersed in a detailed element of their work," explained Martin Samworth, Chief Executive Officer, EMEA, CBRE. "It is a quiet moment of precision in a hectic urban setting."


Marius Veith German. Masks of Society Real Characters. Real Moments. Everyday Beauty. Dusseldorf, Germany

CBRE, a commercial real estate services and investment firm located in Los Angeles, chose a theme that transforms everyday responsibilities into sites of surprising beauty. As Samworth said, "CBRE’s world revolves around architecture, commercial real estate and placemaking and people’s interaction with the built environment is of great interest and importance. The beauty of our competition is that it generates such a wealth of images; showing urban life from perspectives many of us have never even considered."

See the many manifestations of cities at work below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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