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Osama Elolemy
Osama Elolemy
Osama Elolemy

Osama Elolemy

Country: Egypt
Birth: 1979

I am Osama aka Gennie-in-a-Click and I don't know how the Universe has conspired for me to be a photographer, but I am loving it. There have been so many synchronicities which led me to the path I have taken. Slowly but surely, I have discovered my niche, and discovered that I love being a fine art photographer.

I love people and, through my art, I like to discover and capture different portrays and facets of human nature.

I have always been fascinated by the deep connection between humans and nature. As humans we associate images, taste, smell, sound with our emotions.

As an artist I associate my art with my emotions at the time I took the photograph. Just by looking at a photograph that I have created I am taken back to the moment in time when it was shot. I can feel the smell, I can feel the light, I can feel the emotions I had that time, I can feel the wind, I cand hear the sounds around me. It is astonishing to be trans boarded in a second. I hope by giving background to the viewer about the way the photographs were shot, to help them feel the emotions that are associated with each piece of art.

Statement:
Happiness is found all around us, happiness is all little things that we ignore daily, happiness is a deep connection with Gaia.
 

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Nicholas Nixon
United States
1947
Nicholas Nixon is an American photographer, born in 1947 in Detroit, Michigan, known for his work in portraiture and documentary photography. Influenced by the photographs of Edward Weston and Walker Evans, he began working with large-format cameras. Whereas most professional photographers had abandoned these cameras in favor of shooting on 35 mm film with more portable cameras, Nixon preferred the format because it allowed prints to be made directly from the large format negatives, retaining the clarity and integrity of the image. Nixon has said "When photography went to the small camera and quick takes, it showed thinner and thinner slices of time, [unlike] early photography where time seemed non-changing. I like greater chunks, myself. Between 30 seconds and a thousand of a second the difference is very large." His first solo exhibition was at the Museum of Modern Art curated by John Szarkowski in 1976. Nixon’s early city views taken of Boston and New York in the mid-seventies were exhibited at one of the most influential exhibitions of the decade, New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape at the George Eastman House in 1975. In the late nineties, Nixon returned to this subject matter to document Boston’s changing urban landscape during the Big Dig highway development project. In 1976, 1980, and 1987, Nixon was awarded National Endowment for the Arts Photography Fellowships. In 1977 and 1986, he was awarded Guggenheim Fellowship. Nixon's subjects include schoolchildren and schools in and around Boston, people living along the Charles River near Boston and Cambridge as well as cities in the South, his family and himself, people in nursing homes, the blind, sick, and dying people, and the intimacy of couples. Nixon is also well known for his work People With AIDS, which began in 1987. Nixon recorded his subjects with meticulous detail in order to facilitate a connection between the viewer and the subject. In 1975, Nixon began his project, The Brown Sisters consisting of a single portrait of his wife, Bebe, and her three sisters each year, consistently posed in the same left to right order. As of 2020, there are forty-six portraits altogether. The series has been shown at the St. Louis Art Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Harvard University's Fogg Art Museum, the Cincinnati Art Museum, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth the National Gallery of Art, and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston. In 2010, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston organized the exhibition Nicholas Nixon: Family Album which included The Brown Sisters series among other portraits of his wife Bebe, himself and his children Sam and Clementine.Source: Wikipedia Nicholas Nixon is known for the ease and intimacy of his black and white large format photographs. Nixon has photographed porch life in the rural south, schools in and around Boston, cityscapes, sick and dying people, and the intimacy of couples. Recording his subjects close and with meticulous detail, he facilitates an emotional connection between the viewer and the subject. In 1975, he began an ongoing series, The Brown Sisters, an annual portrait of his wife, Bebe, and her three sisters unchangingly posed in the same order. This seminal project has been the subject of multiple publications and exhibitions. In Summer 2013, Nixon’s book Close Far was released by Steidl. The body of work explores the self in physical and psychological proximity to the urban landscape. On the 40th anniversary of Nixon’s The Brown Sisters series, in 2014, the complete sequence of images was exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art and re-published in an anniversary catalogue. In 2017, Fundación MAPFRE in Madrid opened a comprehensive survey of the artist’s work to date, accompanied by a catalogue illustrating over 200 images, and the ICA Boston mounted a chronological retrospective exhibition. In 2021, Galerie Le Château d’Eau in Toulouse mounted an ambitious survey exhibition, accompanied by an expanded catalogue.Source: Fraenkel Gallery
Shomei Tomatsu
Japan
1930 | † 2012
Shomei Tomatsu (東松 照明, Tōmatsu Shōmei) was a Japanese photographer, primarily known for his images that depict the impact of World War II on Japan and the subsequent occupation of U.S. forces. As one of the leading postwar photographers, Tomatsu is attributed with influencing the younger generations of photographers including those associated with the magazine Provoke (Takuma Nakahira and Daido Moriyama). Tomatsu was born in Nagoya in 1930. As an adolescent during World War II, he was mobilized to support Japan's war effort. Like many Japanese students his age, he was sent to work at a steel factory and underwent incessant conditioning intended to instill fear and hatred towards the British and Americans. Once the war ended and Allied troops took over numerous Japanese cities, Tomatsu interacted with Americans firsthand and found that his preconceptions of them were not entirely salient. At the time Tomatsu's contempt for the violence and crimes committed by these soldiers was complicated by individual acts of kindness he received from them – he simultaneously loved and hated their presence. These interactions, which he later described as among the most formative memories of his childhood, initiated his long-standing fixation on and feelings of ambivalence towards the subject of American soldiers. If I had seven lives, I’d be a photographer in every one. -- Shomei Tomatsu Tomatsu embraced photography while an economics student at Aichi University. While still in university, his photographs were shown frequently in monthly amateur competitions by Camera magazine and received recognition from Ihei Kimura and Ken Domon. After graduating in 1954, he joined Iwanami Shashin Bunko, through an introduction made by Aichi University professor Mataroku Kumaza. Tomatsu contributed photographs to the issues Floods and the Japanese (1954) and Pottery Town, Seto Aichi (1954). He stayed at Iwanami for two years before leaving to pursue freelance work. In 1957, Tomatsu participated in the exhibition Eyes of Ten where he displayed his series Barde Children’s School; he was featured in the exhibit twice more when it was held again in 1958 and 1959. After his third showing, Tomatsu established the short-lived photography collective VIVO with fellow Eyes of Ten exhibitors; these other members included Eikoh Hosoe, Kikuji Kawada, Ikkō Narahara, Akira Satō, and Akira Tanno. Towards the end of the 1950s, Tomatsu began photographing Japanese towns with major American bases, a project that would span over 10 years. Tomatsu's artistic output and renown grew significantly during the 1960s, exemplified by his prolific engagements with many prominent Japanese photography magazines. He began the decade by publishing his images of U.S. bases in the magazines Asahi Camera and Camera Mainichi and his series Home in Photo Art. In contrast to his earlier style which resembled traditional photojournalism, Tomatsu was beginning to develop a highly expressionistic form of image-taking that emphasized the photographer's own subjectivity. In response to this emergence, a dispute arose when Iwanami Shashin Bunko founder Yonosuke Natori wrote that Tomatsu had betrayed his foundations as a photojournalist by neglecting the responsibility to present reality in a truthful and legible manner. He rejected the claim that he was ever a photojournalist, and admonished journalistic thinking as an impediment to photography. Both essays were published in Asahi Camera. In addition to Asahi Camera and Photo Art, Tomatsu worked for magazines Gendai no me and Camera Mainichi. For Gendai no me, he edited a monthly series titled I am King (1964); for Camera Mainichi, he printed multiple collaborations made with Yasuhiro Ishimoto and Shigeichi Nagano in 1965 and his own series, The Sea Around Us in 1966. Tomatsu first went to Okinawa to photograph the American bases under the auspices of Asahi Camera in 1969. The images he captured formed the book Okinawa, Okinawa Okinawa which served as an explicit critique of the American air force. On the cover, an anti-base slogan verbalizing his disdain with the overwhelming U.S. presence in Okinawa reads: "The bases are not in Okinawa; Okinawa is in the bases". This sentiment was foreshadowed in Tomatsu's earlier writings, like his 1964 essay for Camera Manichi in which he stated "it would not be strange to call [Japan] the State of Japan in the United States of America. That's how far America has penetrated inside Japan, how deeply it has plumbed our daily lives." Tomatsu visited Okinawa three more times before finally moving to Naha in 1972. While in Okinawa, he traveled to various remote islands including Iriomote and Hateruma; he spent seven months on Miyakojima where he organized a study group called “Miyako University” aimed at mentoring young Miyako residents. Combined with his images taken in Southeast Asia, Tomatsu's photographs of Okinawa from the 1970s were shown in his prizewinning Pencil of the Sun (1975). Although he had come to Okinawa in order to witness its return to Japanese territory, Pencil of the Sun revealed a considerable shift away from the subject of military bases that he pursued throughout 1960s. He credited a diminishing interest in the American armed forces, in addition to the allure of Okinawa's brilliantly colored landscapes, for his adoption of color photography. In 1974, Tomatsu returned to Tokyo where he set up Workshop Photo School, an alternative two-year-long workshop (1974–76), with Eikoh Hosoe, Nobuyoshi Araki, Masahisa Fukase, Daidō Moriyama, and Noriaki Yokosuka; the school published the photo magazine Workshop. Tomatsu's dedication to nurturing the photography community in Japan was also evidenced in his role as a juror for the Southern Japan Photography Exhibition and his membership in the Photographic Society of Japan's committee to create a national museum of photography. The efforts of this group led to the establishment of photography departments at major national museums, such as Yokohama Museum of Art and the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, as well as the first photography museum in Japan, Tokyo Photographic Art Museum. In this, photography is the same thing as love. When my gaze, diving into the sea as my subject, converges with the act of photography, hot sparks fly at the point of intersection. -- Shomei Tomatsu Tomatsu took part in his first major international show, New Japanese Photography (1974) at MoMA New York, alongside workshop members Hosoe, Moriyama, Fukase, and 11 other photographers. New Japanese Photography was the first survey of contemporary Japanese photographers undertaken outside of Japan. It traveled to eight other locations in the United States including the Denver Art Museum, San Francisco Museum of Art, and Portland Art Museum. By 1980, Tomatsu published three more books: Scarlet Dappled Flower (1976) and The Shining Wind (1979) were composed of his images from Okinawa; and Kingdom of Mud (1978) featured his Afghanistan series printed earlier in Assalamu Alaykum. In the early 1980s, Tomatsu had his first international solo exhibition, Shomei Tomatsu: Japan 1952-1981 shown at thirty venues over three years. He was also included in notable international group exhibitions regarding Japanese art: in 1985, he was one of the main artists in Black Sun: The Eyes of Four first shown at the Museum of Modern Art, Oxford; in 1994, he was featured in the seminal show Japanese Art After 1945: Scream Against the Sky at the Yokohama Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. In the last decade of his career, Tomatsu embarked on a new and comprehensive series of retrospectives, dividing his oeuvre into five "mandalas" of place. Each mandala was named after the area it was exhibited: Nagasaki Mandala (Nagasaki Prefectural Art Museum, 2000); Okinawa Mandala (Urasoe Art Museum, 2002); Kyoto Mandala (Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art, 2003); Aichi Mandala (Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art, 2006); and Tokyo Mandala (Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, 2007). Tomatsu also had a separate retrospective, Shomei Tomatsu: Skin of the Nation, for the international museum circuit. Skin of the Nation was organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and curated by Sandra S. Phillips and the photographer and writer Leo Rubinfien. The exhibition toured three countries and five venues from 2004 through 2006: Japan Society (New York); National Gallery of Canada, Corcoran Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Fotomuseum Winterthur. In 2010 Tomatsu moved to Okinawa permanently, where he held the final exhibition during his lifetime, Tomatsu Shomei and Okinawa - Love Letter to the Sun (2011). He succumbed to pneumonia on 14 December 2012 (although this was not publicly announced until January 2013).Source: Wikipedia
Marc Riboud
France
1923 | † 2016
Marc Riboud was a French photographer best known for his extensive reports on the Far East, including The Three Banners of China, Face of North Vietnam, Visions of China, and In China. Photography cannot change the world, but it can show the world as it changes. -- Marc Riboud Riboud was born in Saint-Genis-Laval and attended Lyon's lycée. He photographed his first picture in 1937, using his father's Vest Pocket Kodak camera. From 1943 to 1945, he was a member of the French Resistance as a young man during WWII. From 1945 to 1948, he studied engineering at the École Centrale de Lyon after the war. Marc Riboud worked as an engineer in Lyon factories until 1951, when he took a week-long photography vacation that inspired him to become a photographer. He relocated to Paris, where he met the founders of Magnum Photos, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, and David Seymour. He was a member of the organization by 1953. His ability to capture fleeting moments in life through powerful compositions was already apparent, and he would use this skill for decades to come. Eiffel Tower Painter, Paris, 1953© Marc Riboud Riboud traveled around the world for the next several decades. He was one of the first European photographers to visit China in 1957, and he documented North Vietnam in 1968, 1972, and 1976. Later in life, he traveled extensively throughout the world, primarily in Asia, Africa, the United States, and Japan. Marc Riboud has witnessed war atrocities (photographing from both the Vietnamese and American sides of the Vietnam War) as well as the apparent degeneration of a culture suppressed from within (China during Chairman Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution). In contrast, he has captured the graces of everyday life in sun-drenched corners of the world (Fès, Angkor, Acapulco, Niger, Bénarès, Shaanxi), as well as the lyricism of child's play in everyday Paris. In 1976 he becomes president of Magnum and resigns three years later. Riboud's photographs have appeared in a variety of publications, including Life, Geo, National Geographic, Paris Match, and Stern. He has received the Overseas Press Club Award twice, the Sony World Photography Awards Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009, and major retrospective exhibitions at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and the International Center of Photography in New York. In 1998, Marc Riboud was named an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society. The eye is made to see and not to think.... A good photograph is a surprise. How could we plan and foresee a surprise? We just have to be ready. -- Marc Riboud Eiffel Tower Painter, taken in Paris in 1953, is one of Riboud's most well-known photographs. It depicts a man painting the tower, posing like a dancer and perched between the tower's metal armature. Paris emerges from the photographic haze beneath him. Riboud's images frequently feature lone figures. In Ankara, a central figure is silhouetted against an industrial backdrop, whereas a man lies in a field in France. The vertical composition emphasizes the landscape, the trees, the sky, the water, and the blowing grass, which all surround but do not overpower the human element. The Ultimate Confrontation: The Flower and the Bayonet, Washington D. C, 21 Octobre 1967© Marc Riboud Riboud's photograph, The Ultimate Confrontation: The Flower and the Bayonet, taken on October 21, 1967, is one of the most famous anti-war images. The photograph was taken in Washington, D.C., where thousands of anti-war activists had gathered in front of the Pentagon to protest America's involvement in Vietnam. It shows a young girl, Jan Rose Kasmir, holding a flower and looking out at several rifle-wielding soldiers stationed to block the protesters. Marc Riboud stated about the photograph, "She was just talking, trying to catch the eye of the soldiers, maybe trying to have a dialogue with them. I had the feeling the soldiers were more afraid of her than she was of the bayonets." In contrast to the images in his photo essay A Journey to North Vietnam (1969), Riboud says in an accompanying interview, "My impression is that the country's leaders will not allow the slightest relaxation of the population at large [...] it is almost as if [...] they are anxious to forestall the great unknown - peace." He expanded on his observations of life in North Vietnam in the same Newsweek article: "I was astonished, for example, at the decidedly gay atmosphere in Hanoi's Reunification Park on a Sunday afternoon [...] I honestly did not have the impression they were discussing socialism or the 'American aggressors' [...] I saw quite a few patriotic posters crudely 'improved' with erotic graffiti and sketches." Vietnam, 1976© Marc Riboud There is a gap between what is photographed (or published) and what Riboud said in his interview. The author Geoffrey Wolff commented on this in 1970: "Riboud's photographs illustrate the proposition. The French photographer has been to North Vietnam twice [...] and he is most friendly, on the evidence of his pictures, to the people and the institutions he found there. His photographs are of happy faces,[...] An Air Force ace illustrates how he shot the American 'air pirates' from the sky [...] Who knows the truth about these places?" Rage Against the Machine, an American revolutionary political Rap Metal band, used two of Riboud's photographs for their second single Bullet in the Head. Both images convey strong political and social messages, but they are very different. The front cover depicts American schoolchildren pledging allegiance to the 'flag' (Stars and Stripes) in a classroom; the back cover depicts a young (probably Vietnamese) boy pointing a pistol, with soldiers on parade in the background. It's unclear who or what the boy is aiming at, or if the gun is real or a toy. Since the 1980’s Marc Riboud keeps travelling at his own tempo. He published many books, among which the most famous are The three banners of China, Journal, Huang Shan, Capital of Heaven , Angkor, the serenity of Buddhism, Marc Riboud in China. Riboud married the American sculptor Barbara Chase, who was living in Paris at the time, in 1961. They had two kids. Sally Hemings (1979), her debut novel, received critical acclaim and went on to become a best-seller. They divorced prior to 1981. He later married journalist and author Catherine Chaine. Riboud died on August 30, 2016, at the age of 93, in Paris. In 2004 his retrospective is exhibited at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris and visited by 100 000 people. Numerous museums trough Europe, as well as United States, China and Japan regularly show his work. He received many awards, among which two Overseas Press Club, the Time-Life Achievement, the Lucie Award and the ICP Infinity Award.
Carrie Mae Weems
United States
1953
Considered one of the most influential contemporary American artists, Carrie Mae Weems has investigated family relationships, cultural identity, sexism, class, political systems, and the consequences of power. Determined as ever to enter the picture—both literally and metaphorically—Weems has sustained an on-going dialogue within contemporary discourse for over thirty years. During this time, Carrie Mae Weems has developed a complex body of art employing photographs, text, fabric, audio, digital images, installation, and video. In a New York Times review of her retrospective, Holland Cotter wrote, ''Ms. Weems is what she has always been, a superb image maker and a moral force, focused and irrepressible." Weems has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions at major national and international museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Frist Center for Visual Art, Solomon Guggenheim Museum in New York, and the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville, Spain. Weems has received numerous awards, grants, and fellowships, including the prestigious Prix de Roma, The National Endowment of the Arts, The Alpert, The Anonymous was a Woman, and The Tiffany Awards. In 2012, Weems was presented with one of the first US Department of State’s Medals of Arts in recognition for her commitment to the State Department’s Art in Embassies program. In 2013 Weems received the MacArthur “Genius” grant as well as the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award. She has also received the BET Honors Visual Artist award, the Lucie Award for Fine Art photography, was one of four artists honored at the Guggenheim’s 2014 International Gala, a recipient of the ICP Spotlights Award from the International Center of Photography, The WEB Dubois Award from Harvard University, as well as Honorary Degrees from: California College of the Arts, Colgate University, Bowdoin College, the School of Visual Arts and Syracuse University. She is represented in public and private collections around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Museum of Modern Art, NY; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; and The Tate Modern, London. Weems has been represented by Jack Shainman Gallery since 2008, and is currently Artist in Residence at the Park Avenue Armory. She lives in Syracuse, New York, with her husband Jeffrey Hoone who is Executive Director of Light Work.
Zev Hoover
United States
1999
Zev Hoover, from Natick, Massachusetts, goes by the Flickr username Fiddle Oak, a play on 'little folk', which adequately describes the incredible images that make up his 'miniature world'. In his fantastical photos in which people are digitally shrunken, acorns make excellent seats, Popsicle sticks are the ideal size for building rafts, and paper airplanes are viable modes of transport. Zev told Today.com that while he takes the photos with his own camera, his older sister Nell, 18, was the brains behind the original tiny people concept. "She is sort of my partner in crime," he said, adding that she is "more of a writer". While Nell may have come up with the idea, Zev executes the images beautifully, and his unique work has attracted the attention of professional photographers and designers. The 14-year-old, who also writes a blog, explained the complicated process of how he creates his dreamlike images, many of which feature him as the main subject. The process involves capturing the background image first, shrinking photos of people in similar lighting, manipulating the images in Photoshop and editing the color scheme so that it all matches. 'It takes a long time,' he said of the resulting images, which are so otherworldly that they almost look like drawings. One image shows a boy constructing a house of playing cards, his body the same size as the cards. In another image, a 'miniature' boy and girl sit upon a raft made of Popsicle sticks, the sail of which is a single leaf. Many of Zev's images explore nature, including one in which a boy perches inside the shell of an acorn. Another nature-themed photo, which plays with and distorts size ratio, shows a miniscule-looking boy sitting on the edge of a rock, a violin in his hand. Photography and design websites have picked up on Zev's work, lauding him for being so talented and creative at such a young age.Source: www.dailymail.co.uk
Stefano De Luigi
I was born in Koln and spent all my life so far, between Rome, Milan and Paris. Even if we are living in a time where is not really trendy, I feel myself deeply Europeen. I choose photography to became my language, because I felt it is universal, the only filter you have to use is your own mind-eyes. Below the essential of my biography I am a photographer since 1989. I attended 2 years of courses at ISF (Instituto Superiore di Fotografia) in Rome between 1987/89 and moved, for the first time, to Paris from 1989 to 1996, working, among others for the Louvre Museum. Back and forth from France to Italy In 2000 I received the Honorable Mention of Leica Oskar Barnack Award. That same year I started the project Pornoland, a photographic journey on pornographic movie sets around the world. In 2004 Pornoland became a book enclosing 16 pages of text by English writer Martin Amis. Pornoland has been published by : Thames & Hudson, Knessebeck, La Martinière and Contrasto. This work has been exhibited at REA gallery (Paris 2004), Santa Cecilia gallery (Rome 2005), Lanificio (Naples 2006), Festival Transphotographiques (Lille 2007), New York Photo Festival (NY 2011). Personal exhibitions in these years, among others, include WHO Headquarter (Geneva 2010), VII Gallery (New York 2010), 10b Gallery (Rome 2010), Museum of Modern Art (Rovereto 2011), Photofestival (Athens 2011/15), Fondazione Stelline (Milan, 2013) FotoIstanbul (2015) , Candiani Cultural Center ( Venice 2017) Plenum Gallery ( Catania 2018) Museum of Palazzo Ducale ( Genes 2019) Image Gibellina 2021, Photolux (Lucca 2022) Planches Contact (Deauville 2022). From 2003 to 2010, I worked on Blindness-, my main work, which lasted 8 years. A photographic project on the life condition of blind and low vision people, around the world. Blindness received the patronage of Vision 2020- World Health Organisation and won the W.E. Smith Fellowship Grant in 2007. In 2006 I embarked on the project Cinema Mundi, a World Cinema exploration of the alternative cinematographic scene external to the Hollywood dream factory including China, Russia, Iran, Argentina, Nigeria, South Korea and India. Cinema Mundi has been also transformed into a 7 minutes short movie screened at Locarno International Film Festival on August 4th, 2007. I have been awarded in the World Press Photo contest four times in different categories (1998-2007-2010-2011). In 2009 the Moving Walls of Open Society Foundation exhibited my work in Washington and New York. In 2010 I was the recipient of the Days Japan International Photojournalism Award and the Getty Grant for Editorial Photography, Syngenta Prize 2015, CNC grant for the documentary"Mare Amarum" 2019, Planches Contacts grant 2021 and I was the recipient of Strategie Fotografia grant from the Italian Ministry of Culture in 2022. I published 6 books Pornoland (Contrasto 2004), Blanco, (Trolley book 2010) iDyssey, (Edition Bessard 2017) Babel with Michela Battaglia (Postcart 2018) Pornoland Redux (Self-published 2021) Il Bel Paese (L'Artiere 2023). T.I.A Africa is a continent. But Africa is also a well-defined place in my mind. Africa is unique. Every time I have had the opportunity of going there I have come face to face with incredible tragedies but also with the unwavering hope of its people. Ever since my first journey to South Africa in 1989, where I saw Walter Sisulu walk free in Soweto after years of imprisonment, I continue to be both deeply moved and deeply shocked by all the stories I have witnessed and heard. Every time I step onto African soil I know I will experience something deep, something that inevitably leads to a search for the meaning of life, something that, for me at least, surfaces from deep within when I am in Africa. The questions raised call for humbleness, since often they are without answers. We know that the truth often lies in the middle folds of things. This project aims to raise questions and provoke thoughts which could, perhaps, lead to some answers and which in turn could correspond to some truths. I have tried to conceive this project as a poem. Or perhaps it would better be described as a ballad. The ballad with verses which challenge and play with each other. In the space between two facing photographs there is a story. One of the thousand stories I witnessed in Africa, one of the thousand questions I asked myself, one of the thousand experiences I was fortunate to live. The photographs represent the two extremes of the story that links them: the beginning and the end. I couldn't find a better form of expressive language to convey how Africa is an all-encompassing experience for any human being wishing to embrace it to its full. A painful yet joyful ballad of my personal and ongoing relationship with this continent. This is why I have called it "This is Africa". I should probably have called it "This is my vision of Africa" but it didn't sound the same. By no means does this mean it is the only view of Africa. I know it may seem inadequate and subjective. But so is everything in life, I guess. So, This is Africa. Blanco How does the look of a blind person look like? Can the blind show joy, happiness, disappoint, pain, suffering, pity, regret, with the only use of their eyes? The absence of sight can mean also the absence of complicity behind the camera's lens? We always use the term blind to characterize a person, such as blond, fat, poor, rich. And maybe, in some way, it is the truth. It doesn't matter if it happens in Africa, Asia, or the old Europe. The fact is, they cannot see the light, the colors, the daily scenes, how awful or gorgeous they can be. The blind are a contrast. It is easier to ignore them, their handicap is hidden, but they do have it. It's not necessary to turn the face to something or someone else, they won't see it. They seem 'normal', but they're not. They have their own world, the same and another than ours, made of different feelings, different images, different colors. And dark.
Sebastian Sardi
Sweden
1983
Sebastian Sardi was born in 1983 in Stockholm, Sweden. At the age of 22 he started taking classes in analog photography at the Peoples University in Stockholm. In 2009 he moved to Denmark to study photography at Fatamorgana the Danish school of art and photography. In 2011 he received a Bachelor’s degree in Art History and Visual Studies. He published his first photobook “A Cirkusz” in 2012. Sebastian began his work on photographing mines in 2008 after reading an article on how mining related injuries and deaths are systematically covered up by many authorities. 2019 his second book “Black Diamond” was published on Kehrer Verlag. Today Sebastian Sardi lives and works in Malmö and Copenhagen. Black Diamond It is an apocalyptic landscape. There are huge man-made craters everywhere that make up the visible landscape, the ground is burning, and a vast area is oozing with toxic gases, fire and smoke. Amongst all of this, there are men, woman and children digging in the soil with their bare hands. Coal is mined everywhere in Jharkhand, India, and large parts of it is sorted by hand. The locals call it; Kalaheera; or ”Black Diamond”.
Energy produced by the burning of coal is the single biggest contributor to the man-generated carbon dioxide emissions on this planet. Coal is a major part in the issue of global warming. In Jharkhand many people have been forced away from their lands when companies and authorities recognised the richness that hides in the ground. Underground fires force people to relocate. The mining companies claim they are unable to put out the fires, while the locals blame the companies for letting the fires burn so the coal can be reached and excavated from underneath their villages.

 There is a fragile balance between nature and mankind. A sense of discomfort is felt in the slow but seemingly unavoidable struggle towards the collapse of nature. The human inability to break patterns is painstakingly visible in these photographs, as we knowingly keep on extracting the ground beneath our own feet. Black Diamond is a close (self-)portrait of the people who work with extracting coal from the ground to supply the ever growing demands.


Lu Nan
China
1962
Lu Nan is a contemporary photographer who was born in Beijing, China in 1962. After working for National Pictorial for 5 years, he decided to become an independent photographer. From 1989 to 1990, he shot a series of images of the living conditions of patients in Chinese mental hospitals. From 1992 to 1996, he shot a series of images about Catholicism in China. From 1996 to 2004, he shot a series of images of the daily life of Tibetan farmers. Lu Nan is known as "the most legendary photographer in China". He is also the only Chinese contemporary photographer chosen by Aperture magazine as a topic colon. Lu Nan is constantly invited to participate in numerous exhibitions; however, he is extremely selective about the exhibitions he is involved with. Lu also refused to have his portrait taken by others, so it’s very rare to see any photo documentations of him. For fifteen years, Lu has been leading a life that is almost like a monk, spending his time working and studying, as he believes that “good stuff comes out of reticence.” Since 1989, Lu Nan has spent 15 years completing his trilogy of photographic series: The Forgotten People, China's Catholicism and Four Seasons in Tibet. These images have allowed Nan to place himself in the international spotlight. But perhaps more importantly, he became one of the first people who exposed another side of Chinese society; people often considered outcasts. “I just respect them and care about them… They are the same as us,” said Lu as a reminder that all human beings are equal and deserve dignity. His black and white photographs depict people within their own environment by using a rather straight glance, which is yet associated with delicate contrasts and elegant compositions.Source: Wikipedia Correspondent for the prestigious international cooperative Magnum Photos since the 1990s, Lu Nan 呂楠 (born in 1962 in Beijing) is an independent photographer who has been documenting marginalized people in China. His pivotal series started in 1989 with The Forgotten People: The Condition of China’s Psychiatric Patients. Pursing his intentions to document Chinese people from the margins of society, his subsequent series captured members of the Catholic Faith (On The Road: The Catholic Faith in China, 1992-1996), peasants’ life in Tibet (Four Seasons: Everyday Life of Tibetan Peasants, 1996-2004), and prisoner’s conditions (Prisons of North Burma, 2006).Source: photographyofchina.com “In 15 years, not a day went by when I didn’t question my own work,” says Chinese photographer Lu Nan, in an interview included in his new book Trilogy. “That’s why I scrutinize what I was doing by means of reading. This mode of assessing action through thought and assessing thought through action helped me to complete these projects." “The trilogy is concerned with human beings. I hope that by looking into real life, I’ll find something fundamentally and enduringly human.” Lu Nan isn’t well known outside China but this book, his first in English, should change all that. It collects together three projects he shot over 15 years – The Forgotten People, a look at the lives of Chinese psychiatric patients, shot from 1989-1990; On the Road, a look at the lives of Catholics in China, shot from 1992-96; and Four Seasons, a look at the lives of rural Tibetans, shot from 1996-2004. These microcosms are apparently very different and yet, to Lu Nan, they’re intimately interrelated. Inspired by image-makers such as Josef Sudek and Sebastiao Salgado and extremely well-read, Lu Nan says the three projects represent the three states of life – The Forgotten People is about suffering and adversity, On the Road purification, and Four Seasons about a blessed, serene state.Source: British Journal of Photography
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