The Art Institute of Chicago was the place to be on September 28th as the world’s best action and adventure sports photographers gathered for the Red Bull Illume Winner Award Ceremony during which, after months of waiting, the 55 best action and adventure photographs in the world were unveiled to the world, including the 11 Category Winners and the Overall Winner.

From 34,624 submissions, 53 judges chose the following 11 images as the best action and adventure sports photographs the world has seen.

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Close Up: Denis Klero, Russia with his black and white shot of climber Rustam Gelmanov showing his chalk-covered hands in Fontainebleu, France.

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Energy: Luke Shadbolt, Australia for his black and white image showing the power of nature. Surfer Renan Faccini is set against a huge swell in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

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Enhance: Dean Treml, New Zealand and his image of cliff diver Jonathan Paredes jumping from the 28 meter platform on the roof of the Copenhagen Opera House during the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, 2013.

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Lifestyle: Jody MacDonald, Canada with her mesmerizing image of her brother Ken MacDonald sitting atop a train during their adventure through the Sahara Desert.

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Masterpiece by Yodobashi: Lorenz Holder, Germany showing BMX rider Senad Grosic ride his bike over a bridge in an autumnal Gablenz, Germany.

This image was awarded highest Red Bull Illume honors as this image was chosen as the Overall Winner of Red Bull Illume Image Quest 2016, as well as being the favorite image amongst the athlete community, also winning the Athlete’s Choice Award.

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New Creativity: Ale Di Lullo, Italy for his fun shot of Aaron Chase riding his mountain bike on the windshield of a NYC cab.

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Playground: Lorenz Holder, Germany showing BMX rider Senad Grosic ride down a rusted viewing platform in Senftenberg, Germany.

Photographer: Daniel Vojtech Red Bull Illume 2016 Category: Sequence Athletes: Miroslav Krejci, Jan Rudzinskyj, Stanislav Cejka and Jan Tvrdik Location: Jaromer, Czech Republic

Sequence by Sony: Daniel Vojtêch, Czech Republic with his shot of Flying Bulls pilots Miroslav Krejci, Jan Rudzinskyi, Stanislav Cejka and Jan Tvrdic in Jaromêř, Czech Republic.

Photographer: Dean Treml Red Bull Illume 2016 Category: Spirit Athletes: Josh Neilson, Barnaby Prees, Sam Sutton, Tim Pickering, Ben Brown, Jamie Sutton and Jared Seiler Location: Storulfossen, Norway

Spirit: Dean Treml, New Zealand for his image showing kayaker Josh Neilson being supported by fellow paddlers Barnaby Prees, Sam Sutton, Tim Pickering, Ben Brown, Jamie Sutton and Jaren Seiler after a bad landing off Matze’s Drop, Storulfossen, Norway.

Photographer: Micky Wiswedel Red Bull Illume 2016 Category: Wings Athlete: Jamie Smith Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Wings: Micky Wiswedel, South Africa with his shot of climber Jamie Smith mid-fall as he attempts a new route on Table Mountain, Cape Town.

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New for 2016 was the Mobile Category. It was won by Vegard Aasen, Norway for his black and white mountaineering image taken in Hakuba, Japan.

Make sure to head over to our Gallery if you want to see the entire Red Bull Illume Image Quest 2016 Top 275 and keep an eye on redbullillume.com for the stories behind the shots.

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