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Elizabeth (Lee) Miller
Self Portrait, New York Studio, NY 1932
Elizabeth (Lee) Miller
Elizabeth (Lee) Miller

Elizabeth (Lee) Miller

Country: United States
Birth: 1907 | Death: 1977

Lee Miller, 1907-1977, first entered the world of photography as a model in New York to photographers such as Edward Steichen, Arnold Genthe and George Hoyninguen-Huene.

In 1929 Miller moved to Paris and became the assistant, and lover, of Man Ray. Together, they produced some of the most significant works of both of their careers, including rediscovering the solarisation technique in Man Ray’s darkroom. She quickly became established as both surrealist artist and photographer in her own right and returned to New York to run her own studio with commissions for portraits, packing shots and editorials for Vogue magazine.

Lee Miller spent several years in the mid 1930’s living in Cairo with her Egyptian husband, Aziz Eloui Bey. Bored of life in the city, she would travel by jeep through the desert on photography exhibitions and re-imagine desert landscapes with her witty and surrealist flair.

In 1939, Lee moved to London and worked as freelance photographer for British Vogue magazine. Alongside this, her documentation of the Blitz was published in Grim Glory, a pamphlet encouraging the US to join the war effort. Lee Miller later became one of the first ever female war correspondents accredited to the US Army and travelled with the US troops throughout Europe during 1944 and 1945. She documented the liberation of Paris, the siege at St Malo and Buchenwald and Dachau concentration camps. Perhaps most famously, she took a self-portrait sitting in Adolf Hitler’s bathtub in his Munich apartment, a statement of the end of the war.

Lee Miller mostly abandoned photography later in her life and didn’t speak of her wartime experiences. Her former and final home, Farley Farm House, Sussex, England is now the base of the Lee Miller Archives which holds over 60,000 of her negatives as well as manuscripts and vintage prints. Over 3,000 images are available to view at www.leemiller.co.uk.
 

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Consuelo Kanaga
United States
1894 | † 1978
Consuelo Kanaga (born Consuelo Delesseps Kanaga) was an American photographer and writer who became well known for her photographs of African-Americans. She is one of the pioneers of modern American photography, began her career as a photojournalist in 1915 in San Francisco. In the 1920s, Alfred Stieglitz inspired her to develop a more aesthetic approach, and a trip to Europe in 1928 awakened her lifelong preoccupation with European modernist painting and the ways in which that work was influenced by the sculpture of Africa. Kanaga successfully combined a Pictorialist aesthetic with a realist strategy, producing handsomely composed and carefully printed images. She was one of few white American photographers in the 1930s to make artistic portraits of African Americans.Source: The Brooklyn Museum Kanaga was born on May 25, 1894 in Astoria, Oregon, the second child of Amos Ream Kanaga and Mathilda Carolina Hartwig. Her father was a successful lawyer and judge in Ohio. After moving to Astoria he became the district attorney for the city, and he also traveled widely, often leaving his family behind with little notice. After they moved to California in 1915 her mother became a real estate broker, a highly unusual occupation for a woman at that time. The last name "Kanaga" is of Swiss origin, and a family genealogy traces its roots back at least 250 years. She spelled her first name "Consuela," at least in the 1920s and '30s, but it is generally listed now as Consuelo, a more common Spanish name. Her middle name "Delesseps" is said to have come from her mother's admiration for Ferdinand de Lesseps, the French diplomat and developer of the Suez Canal. In 1911 the family moved from Oregon to Larkspur in Marin County, California. In 1915 Kanaga got a job as a reporter, feature writer and part-time photographer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Dorothea Lange later said that Kanaga was the first female newspaper photographer she had ever encountered. It was there that she discovered Alfred Stieglitz's journal Camera Work and decided to become a photographer. Lange encouraged her to take up photography as a career and introduced her to the growing San Francisco Bay Area community of artistic photographers, notably Anne Brigman, Edward Weston, Francis Bruguière, and Louise Dahl-Wolf. In 1919 she married mining engineer Evans Davidson, but they separated within two years. In 1922 she moved to New York in order to work as a photojournalist for the New York American newspaper. While in New York a co-worker at the newspaper, Donald Litchfield, introduced her to Alfred Stieglitz. Stieglitz worked with Kanaga to help transform her vision from photojournalism to a more artistic photographic style. By March 1923 she was living with Litchfield, although at the time she had not yet divorced Davidson. In 1924 she and Litchfield moved to California, living at times near Santa Cruz, San Francisco and Los Angeles. By the end of the year she had finalized divorce proceedings against Davidson, and she became engaged to Litchfield. The engagement lasted only six months, however, and by the end of the year they were no longer a couple. In 1926 she met Tina Modotti, who was visiting San Francisco, and she put together a small exhibition of Modotti's photographs at the Kanaga Studio on Post Street. Aided by art patron Albert Bender, she began planning a prolonged "tour" of Europe, and in 1927 she spent the latter part of the year traveling and photographing in France, Germany, Hungary and Italy. While there she met up with Dahl, and the two of them spent many weeks traveling together. While traveling to Tunisia in January 1928, she met James Barry McCarthy, an Irish writer and ex-pilot, and by March they were married. In May they returned to New York City and took up residence there. Kanaga initially found work as a photographic retoucher, but within a few months she had her own darkroom and was printing the first of her many photos from Europe. In 1930 she and McCarthy moved to San Francisco, and soon she was re-established in the photographic community there. In 1931 she met and began to employ African-American Eluard Luchell McDaniels, a young "man-of-all-trades" who worked for her as a handyman and chauffeur. She began to photograph him around her home, and as they talked she became captivated by the plight of African-Americans and their continuing fight against racism. Soon she was devoting much of her photography to images of African-Americans, their homes and their culture. In 1932 she was invited by Weston and Ansel Adams to participate in the famous Group f/64 show at the M.H. de Young Museum, and she showed four prints. There is some confusion about whether Kanaga should actually be called a "member" of Group f/64. The announcement for the show at the de Young Museum listed seven photographers in Group f/64 and said "From time to time various other photographers will be asked to display their work with Group f/64. Those invited for the first showing are: Preston Holder, Consuela Kanaga, Alma Lavenson, Brett Weston." However, in 1934 the group posted a notice in Camera Craft magazine that said "The F:64 group includes in its membership such well known names as Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Willard Van Dyke, John Paul Edwards, Imogene [sic] Cunningham, Consuela Kanaga and several others." In an interview later in her life, Kanaga herself said "I was in that f/64 show with Edward Weston, Imogen Cunningham, Willard Van Dyke and Ansel Adams, but I wasn't in a group, nor did I belong to anything ever. I wasn't a belonger." In 1935 she moved back to New York without McCarthy, and the two apparently were divorced sometime that year. She began plans for a portfolio of African Americans and interviewed several families in Harlem with whom she hoped to live while documenting their lives. While there she encountered painter Wallace Putnam, whom she had met the last time she lived in New York. Within three months they were married. They spent part of their honeymoon visiting Alfred Stieglitz at his home at Lake George. In 1938 she joined the Photo League, where she lectured a new generation of artistic photographers and became the leader of the Documentary Group projects, including Neighborhoods of New York. Her photographs were printed in progressive publications of the time, including New Masses, Labor Defender, and Sunday Worker. By 1940 she found teaching too restrictive, and she returned to taking photographs full time. She was actively photographing and exhibiting throughout the 1940s, 50s and 60s. In the latter decade she became very active in civil rights, and she took part in and photographed many demonstrations and marches. In 1963 she was arrested in Albany, Georgia during the Walk for Peace. She finally seemed to have found the right romantic and creative partner in Putnam, and the two of them remained together for the rest of her life. They traveled frequently and spent the last half of the 1960s going back and forth to France. A review published in New York Times described that "She continued to work into her 70s, despite suffering from emphysema and cancer, which were probably caused by the chemicals used in creating her prints. Her body of work, though comparatively small, is consistently exceptional. Consuelo Kanaga died virtually unknown on February 28, 1978, but her talent endures." Her entire estate amounted to $1,345 in photographic equipment, almost 2,500 negatives and 375 prints. Everything else she had given away to friends.Source: Wikipedia
Aleksander Rodchenko
Russia
1891 | † 1956
Aleksander Rodchenko was a Russian and Soviet artist, sculptor, photographer, and graphic designer who emerged following the Russian Revolution. He was one of the founders of Russian Constructivist and a Productivist artist, married to artist Varvara Stepanova. He began his career as a painter and graphic designer before moving on to photomontage and photography. His photography was socially involved, formally creative, and anti-painting. Concerned about the necessity for analytical-documentary picture series, Aleksander Rodchenko frequently shot his subjects from unusual angles—usually high above or low below—in order to shock the viewer and delay recognition. "One has to shoot several distinct photos of a subject, from diverse points of view and in varied settings, as though one viewed it in the round rather than looking through the same key-hole over and over," he wrote. Only the camera seems to be really capable of describing modern life. -- Aleksander Rodchenko Aleksander Mikhailovich Rodchenko was born in St. Petersburg to a working-class family that relocated to Kazan when his father died in 1909. He became an artist without any prior exposure to the art world, relying mostly on art periodicals for inspiration. Aleksander Rodchenko began studies at the Kazan Art School in 1910, under Nicolai Fechin and Georgii Medvedev, when he met Varvara Stepanova, whom he eventually married. The critic Osip Brik, 1924© Aleksander Rodchenko Following 1914, he continued his artistic education at the Stroganov Institute in Moscow, where he created his first abstract drawings in 1915, influenced by Kazimir Malevich's Suprematism. The following year, he took part in The Store, an exhibition organized by another formative influence, Vladimir Tatlin. Rodchenko's work was influenced heavily by Cubism and Futurism, as well as Malevich's Suprematist compositions, which featured geometric forms deployed against a white background. Aleksander Rodchenko was Tatlin's student and assistant, and the interest in figuration that characterized Rodchenko's early work faded as he experimented with design elements. He created his paintings with a compass and ruler, with the goal of eliminating expressive brushwork. Rodchenko worked for Narkompros and was one of the RABIS organizers. RABIS was founded between 1919 and 1920. In 1920, the Bolshevik government appointed Rodchenko as Director of the Museum Bureau and Purchasing Fund, with responsibility for the reorganization of art schools and museums. He became the secretary of the Moscow Artists' Union, established the Fine Arts Division of the People's Commissariat for Education, and assisted in the establishment of the Institute for Artistic Culture. From 1920 to 1930, he was a teacher at the Higher Technical-Artistic Studios, a Bauhaus organization with a "checkered career." It ceased operations in 1930. In 1921, Aleksander Rodchenko joined the Productivist group, along with Stepanova and Aleksei Gan, to advocate for the incorporation of art into everyday life. He abandoned painting to focus on graphic design for posters, books, and films. He was profoundly influenced by the ideas and practice of filmmaker Dziga Vertov, with whom he collaborated extensively in 1922. Impressed by the German Dadaists' photomontage, Rodchenko began his own experiments in the medium, first using found images in 1923, and then shooting his own photographs from 1924 on. In 1923, his first published photomontage illustrated Mayakovsky's poem About This. Rodchenko created his most famous poster in 1924, an advertisement for the Lengiz Publishing House titled Books, which features a young woman with a cupped hand shouting "Books in all branches of knowledge," printed in modernist typography. Photography has all the rights, and all the merits, necessary for us to turn towards it as the art of our time. -- Aleksander Rodchenko Portrait of the Artist’s Mother, 1924© Aleksander Rodchenko From 1923 to 1928, Rodchenko worked closely with Mayakovsky (of whom he took several portraits) on the design and layout of LEF and Novy LEF, Constructivist artists' publications. Many of his photographs were published in or used as covers for these and other publications. His images were concerned with the placement and movement of objects in space, as well as the elimination of unnecessary detail. During this time, he and Stepanova painted the well-known panels of Moscow's Mosselprom building. Varvara Rodchenko, their daughter, was born in 1925. Rodchenko's work was very abstract throughout the 1920s. He joined the October Group of artists in 1928, but was expelled three years later after being accused of "formalism," an accusation first leveled in the pages of Sovetskoe Foto in 1928. In the 1930s, as the Party's guidelines governing artistic practice shifted in favor of Socialist realism, he focused on sports photography and images of parades and other choreographed movements. In the late 1930s, Aleksander Rodchenko returned to painting, stopped photographing in 1942, and produced abstract expressionist works in the 1940s. Throughout these years, he continued to organize photography exhibitions for the government. In 1956, he died in Moscow.
Bob Newman
United States
1950
Bob began photographing on a regular basis after retiring as a physician. His images document the challenges and culture within marginalized communities, which are often similar to the underprivileged patients he enjoyed serving. After retirement, photography came to occupy much of this time. Initially his forays were associated with photo trips or workshops. When he first saw images of the Irish Travellers in 2015, he became intrigued. Photographing their culture and lives became his first long-term project. In the last five years, he has returned to visit the Travellers thirteen times, averaging 2-3 visits per year. To date he has visited 30 sites. Returning on multiple occasions has provided an opportunity to take a deep dive into their history and traditions. Statement The Irish Travellers is a long-term photographic project that began in 2016. Often referred to as Pavees, they number about 40,000 in Ireland and are ethnically separate from Romani/Gypsies. No longer nomadic, they now live in extended family roadside camps or halting sites. They are predominantly Irish Roman Catholic, endogamous, and traditional marriages are the norm. The women spend their time with their families, sometimes raising as many as 16 – 18 children. Girls are taught to act and dress provocatively as toddlers. It is exceedingly difficult for Traveller men to find jobs. The unemployment rate is 84%. Most live on a dole from the Irish Government. With time on their hands, horses and dogs play a major role in their lives. They face discrimination and racism because of their differences from the Settled Irish. Despite this, they are a remarkably resilient group who highly prize their culture, traditions and family life. This series focuses on Traveller children.
Vanessa Winship
United Kingdom
1960
Born in the United Kingdom. Vanessa Winship lives in London. After studying cinema and photography at Westminster University (Polytechnic of Central London), Vanessa shares her time between photography and teaching. She then fully devotes herself to photography and lives for about 10 years in the Balkans and Turkey. She joins Agence VU in 2005,and the Gallery VU in 2009. Laureate of numerous prizes, including the World Press Photo (Amsterdam) twice, the National Portrait Gallery Prize (London), PhotoEspana Descubrimientos (Madrid). Exhibited her works in numerous museums and festivals such as the Rencontres d'Arles, the Kunstall Museum of Contemporary Art in Rotterdam or the Horst Gallery and Photographers Gallery in London. Prize-winner of the HCB Award 2011 for her project "Out there: an American Odyssey." Source: Agence VU Winship grew up in Barton-upon-Humber, rural Lincolnshire. She studied at Baysgarth School; Hull Art College (which included a photography module); photography at Filton Technical College, Bristol; and photography, film, and video at the Polytechnic of Central London from 1984 to 1987, graduating with a BA (Hons). She met her husband, the photographer George Georgiou, on the degree course. From 1999 she spent a decade living and working in the Balkans and surrounding territories of Turkey and the Black Sea. First she lived in Belgrade, for a short while in Athens, and five years in Istanbul. Her work is about the concepts of borders, land, desire, identity, belonging, memory and history, how those histories are told and how identities are expressed. Her books have been widely acclaimed. Sean O'Hagan, writing in The Guardian, said "She is perhaps best known for Sweet Nothings, one of my favourite photography books of recent years". She Dances on Jackson was considered by Simon Bainbridge (editor of the BJP), Sean O'Hagan, Rob Hornstra and other reviewers to be shortlisted amongst the best photography books released in 2013. Phil Coomes, Picture editor at BBC News said "This is pure photography, and in my view, when viewed as a whole, is about as good as it gets." Winship and George Georgiou travel together, alternating between one working and the other either supporting them or experimenting with their own photography. She uses black-and-white photographic film in natural light. For her work in a reportage – or street – style she has used a 35 mm hand-held camera, for her landscape work she has at times used a medium format camera and for her portraiture work she has at times used a 5×4 inch large format camera. She says of the difference between using 35 mm and large format that "Each methodology makes for a different relationship with my subjects [and] both have their own beauty for me." Source: Wikipedia
Davide Monteleone
Davide Monteleone is a photographer, researcher, and a National Geographic Fellow. He works on long-term project using photography video and text, exploring the relation between structures of Power and individuals. Known for his specific interest in the post-soviet countries, he published five books: Dusha, Russian Soul in 2007, La Linea Inesistente, in 2009, Red Thistle in 2012 and Spasibo in 2013, The April Theses, 2017. His projects have brought him numerous awards, including several World Press Photo prizes, and grants such as the Aftermath Grant, European Publishers Award and Carmignac Photojournalism Award. He regularly contributes for leading publications all over the world, and his projects have been presented as installations, exhibitions and screenings at festivals and galleries worldwide including the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Saatchi Gallery in London, MEP in Paris and Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome. He is engaged with educational activities, regularly lecturing at universities and teaching workshops internationally. Italian photographer born in 1974, member of VU’ Agency since 2017, based in Zürich (Switzerland) After beginning engineering studies, David Monteleone quickly turned to journalism and photography. Holding a Master research in Art and Politics from the Goldsmiths University in London, he first worked as an agency correspondent in Moscow from 2001 to 2003. Since 2003, Davide Monteleone’s documentary photographic writing has enabled him to carry out, between Italy and Russia, numerous editorial assignments and regular collaborations with prestigious international press titles (TIME Magazine, The New Yorker, National Geographic, etc.). He also develops long-term personal projects focused on social issues and conflictual relationship between Power and individuals. Particularly committed to documenting the survivals and new aspirations of the post-Soviet world, he published his first book Dusha, Russian Soul in 2007, followed by La Liena Inesistente in 2009, Red Thistle in 2012, Spasibo in 2013 , « The April Theses » in 2017 and « In The Russian East » in 2019. In 2014, he goes beyond the borders of the post-Soviet territories and initiates a work – still in progress – about geopolitical, socio-economic, and environmental impact of the New Silk Roads (“Yi Dai Yi Lu”) and thus about Chinese expansion on several continents. Exhibited in many countries, his work has received prestigious awards, among which several World Press Photo awards (2007, 2009, 2011), the Aftermath Project award (2010), the European Publishers Award for Photography (2011), the European Photo Exhibition Award (2012), the Carmignac Prize for photojournalism (2013), the Asia Society Fellowship (2016) or the National Geographic Storytelling Fellowship (2019-2020).Source: VU' l'agence
Chris Rainier
Canada
1958
Chris Rainier is a National Geographic Society EXPLORER and documentary photographer/filmmaker - who is highly respected for his documentation of endangered cultures and traditional languages around the globe. In 2002 he was awarded the Lowell Thomas Award by the Explorers Club for his efforts on cultural preservation, and in 2014 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society of London/UK -specializing in cultural preservation He is the Director of The Cultural Sanctuaries Foundation - a global program focused on preserving Biodiversity and Traditional Cultural Knowledge. During his continued tenure with the National Geographic Society he has been the co-founder and co-director of both the Enduring Voices Language Project and Director of the All Roads Photography Program, designed to support indigenous groups with modern technology desiring to document their traditional culture and create sustainable solutions to preserve the planet in the 21st Century. In addition as a NG Fellow he was an Editor for NG Traveler focused on documentation of traditional culture. Rainier has completed photographic projects for the United Nations, UNESCO, Amnesty International, Conservation International, the Smithsonian Institution, Time Magazine, the New York Times, LIFE Magazine, and the National Geographic Society. Rainier has photographed global culture, conflict, famine, and war in such places as: Somalia, Sarajevo/Bosnia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Cambodia, and Iraq for TIME Magazine, - and for NPR Radio. In the early 1980's Rainier was Ansel Adams last photographic assistant- during his tenure with the noted photographer- he worked with Mr. Adams to amplify the use of Art Photography as a social tool - helping to preserve threatened wilderness areas and National Parks. Rainier went on to collaborate with UNESCO and IUCN on a Global Project using photography to preserve endangered wilderness areas around the world. Rainier's photography and books have been widely shown and collected by museums around the world, including the Australian Museum in Sydney, the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris, the International Center of Photography in New York, the George Eastman House International Museum in Rochester, New York, The National Geographic Society, and the United Nations.
Rajan Dosaj
United States
1958
Born and raised in the United States, I spent nearly 20 years in the theater world, first as a dancer and singer in Broadway musicals and later as an actor and director. Upon my retirement from theater, I settled into the business world but it wouldn't be long before I was in need of a creative outlet and the Sebastiao Salgado documentary, The Salt of the Earth, rekindled my brief high school interest in photography. Soon, the books of Alec Soth, Nancy Rexroth, Sally Mann, Joshua Jackson, and many more were on my selves and with a newly purchased camera in hand, I started out on my latest adventure. Naturally, I started with dance portraits and found it incredibly exciting and fulfilling but soon I ventured into other genres to improve my work. Whether it was wildlife, street, architecture, portrait, or fine art photography, I was either taking a class or teaching myself about the genre in order to become a better photographer. In my short time behind the camera, I have been fortunate enough to have some of my images appear in galleries across the country, including Photo Place Gallery, A Smith Gallery, Praxis Gallery, Black Box Gallery, SE Center for Photography, and the Decode Gallery. With my background in theater, I know that photography can be a frustrating art form where most of the time I end up kicking myself for the mistakes that I continuously make over and over. But every once in a while, those rare moments come along when my eyes through a camera are able to see and capture an extraordinary moment.
Bharat Patel
United Kingdom
1949
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