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Bernard Benavides
Bernard Benavides
Bernard Benavides

Bernard Benavides

Country: Spain
Birth: 1980

Bernard Benavides (Barcelona, 1980), photographer, licensed by the Gris Art School Barcelona, in 2011, has developed his professional and artistic career through his passion for travel and photography. Always interested in the remote cultures of distant countries, with which he establishes a personal and close link to meet in person, to experience the day to day of the ethnic group, its culture, its rituals and its particular landscapes and lost paradises. This has marked the pulse of his travels and allowed him to perceive each face and each landscape uniquely.
He is an avid traveler who takes the opportunity to escape and travel the world with his camera and backpack. He likes the most complicated challenges and trips.
Since different events occur in the interests of today's world, his preference is always social photography. He believes that it is not the experience itself, but the meaning that he gives to the experience.

His professional and artistic career began at the age of thirteen. Having personally experienced the Civil War of El Salvador for three years, it marked the rest of his life and had an important influence on the decision to direct his career to photojournalism. In 2011, due to personal and professional stability gained from the cultural exchanges experienced in his previous trips, as well as for the discovery of new places such as Kano, Nigeria, he adopted a different and more critical outlook when discovering and documenting the ethnic political conflict between Christians and Muslims. Nigeria was a country where he developed a high degree of personal and professional learning. His long trips through Central Asia, South East Asia, America, Australia, and currently a two-year trip through Africa, have led him to enjoy and document with his lens, the native peoples and especially the fascination of living with tribes.
 

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Sheila Metzner
United States
1939
Sheila Metzner (born 1939) is an American photographer. She was the first female photographer to collaborate with the Vogue magazine on an ongoing basis. Metzner lives in Brooklyn, New York. Metzner graduated from the Higher School of Art and Design and the Faculty of Visual Communications of the Pratt Institute. After that, she was engaged in promotional activities. In the 1960s, she became the first woman to be promoted to art director by Doyle Dane Bernbach, an advertising agency. Thanks to this, she successfully collaborated with well-known photographers, including Richard Avedon, Melvin Sokolsky, Bob Richardson and Diane Arbus. Inspired by the work of 19th-century English photographer Julia Margaret Cameron, who painted pictures of her family, Metzner photographed her husband, artist Jeffrey Metzner, and her children. In the first 10 years, she shot only her family without publishing photos. Her first show in New York was called Friends & Family. She decided to show part of the images to the director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, John Sarkovsky. In 1978, he bought one and included in MoMA exhibition Mirrors and Windows: American Photography Since 1960. A second exhibition – Photography (Spring 1981): Couches, Diamonds and Pie – took place there. After that, The New York Times and The Sunday Times published a photograph of Sheila's husband. In 2008 the School of Visual Arts presented the exhibition Time Line: Shelia Metzner at the Visual Arts Museum, New York. Sheila Metzner lives in New York. She was married to the artist Jeffrey Metzner, with whom she had seven children.Source: Wikipedia Sheila Metzner's unique photographic style has positioned her as a contemporary master in the worlds of fine art, fashion, portraiture, still life and landscape photography. Born in Brooklyn, she attended Pratt Institute, where she majored in Visual Communications, and was then hired by Doyle Dane Bernbach advertising agency as its first female art director. She took pictures all the while, amassing them slowly over the next thirteen years, while raising five children. One of these photographs was included in a famous and controversial exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art - Mirrors and Windows: American Photography since 1960 - and became the dark horse hit of the exhibition. Gallery shows and commercial clients soon followed. Her first commercial client was Valentino, followed by Elizabeth Arden, Perry Ellis, Shiseido, Fendi, Saks Fifth Avenue, Paloma Picasso, Victoria's Secret, Revlon, and in recent years Levi's, Ralph Lauren, Club Monaco, Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus. Sheila's fine art photographs are featured in the collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The J. Paul Getty Museum, The International Center of Photography, The Brooklyn Museum, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, The Chrysler Museum, The Art Institute of Chicago, Agfa and Polaroid Corporations, Saks Fifth Avenue, as well as many personal collections. She has published five monographs: Objects of Desire, which won the American Society of Magazine Photographers Ansel Adams Award for Book Photography; Sheila Metzner's Color; Inherit the Earth, a collection of landscapes shot during her travels, Form and Fashion, a collection of images culled from twenty years of her work in fine-art and fashion, and Sheila Metzner: From Life in 2017.Source: sheilametzner.com
Jacob Riis
Denmark/United States
1849 | † 1914
Jacob August Riis was a Danish-American social reformer, "muckraking" journalist, and social documentary photographer. He contributed significantly to the cause of urban reform in America at the turn of the twentieth century. He is known for using his photographic and journalistic talents to help the impoverished in New York City; those impoverished New Yorkers were the subject of most of his prolific writings and photography. He endorsed the implementation of "model tenements" in New York with the help of humanitarian Lawrence Veiller. Additionally, as one of the most famous proponents of the newly practicable casual photography, he is considered one of the fathers of photography due to his very early adoption of flash. While living in New York, Riis experienced poverty and became a police reporter writing about the quality of life in the slums. He attempted to alleviate the bad living conditions of poor people by exposing their living conditions to the middle and upper classes. Riis had for some time been wondering how to show the squalor of which he wrote more vividly than his words could express. He tried sketching but was incompetent at this. Camera lenses of the 1880s were slow as was the emulsion of photographic plates; photography thus did not seem to be of any use for reporting about conditions of life in dark interiors. In early 1887, however, Riis was startled to read that "a way had been discovered to take pictures by flashlight. The darkest corner might be photographed that way." The German innovation, by Adolf Miethe and Johannes Gaedicke, flash powder was a mixture of magnesium with potassium chlorate and some antimony sulfide for added stability; the powder was used in a pistol-like device that fired cartridges. This was the introduction of flash photography. Recognizing the potential of the flash, Riis informed a friend, Dr. John Nagle, chief of the Bureau of Vital Statistics in the City Health Department who was also a keen amateur photographer. Nagle found two more photographer friends, Henry Piffard and Richard Hoe Lawrence, and the four of them began to photograph the slums. Their first report was published in the New York newspaper The Sun on February 12, 1888; it was an unsigned article by Riis which described its author as "an energetic gentleman, who combines in his person, though not in practice, the two dignities of deacon in a Long Island church and a police reporter in New York." The "pictures of Gotham's crime and misery by night and day" are described as "a foundation for a lecture called 'The Other Half: How It Lives and Dies in New York.' to give at church and Sunday school exhibitions, and the like." The article was illustrated by twelve-line drawings based on the photographs. Riis and his photographers were among the first Americans to use flash photography. Pistol lamps were dangerous and looked threatening, and would soon be replaced by another method for which Riis lit magnesium powder on a frying pan. The process involved removing the lens cap, igniting the flash powder, and replacing the lens cap; the time taken to ignite the flash powder sometimes allowed a visible image blurring created by the flash. Riis's first team soon tired of the late hours, and Riis had to find other help. Both his assistants were lazy and one was dishonest, selling plates for which Riis had paid. Riis sued him in court successfully. Nagle suggested that Riis should become self-sufficient, so in January 1888 Riis paid $25 for a 4×5 box camera, plate holders, a tripod and equipment for developing and printing. He took the equipment to the potter's field cemetery on Hart Island to practice, making two exposures. The result was seriously overexposed but successful. For three years, Riis combined his own photographs with others commissioned of professionals, donations by amateurs and purchased lantern slides, all of which formed the basis for his photographic archive. Because of the nighttime work, he was able to photograph the worst elements of the New York slums, the dark streets, tenement apartments, and "stale-beer" dives, and documented the hardships faced by the poor and criminal, especially in the vicinity of notorious Mulberry Street. A particularly important effort by Riis was his exposure of the condition of New York's water supply. His five-column story "Some Things We Drink", in the August 21, 1891, edition of the New York Evening Sun, included six photographs (later lost). Riis wrote: "I took my camera and went up in the watershed photographing my evidence wherever I found it. Populous towns sewered directly into our drinking water. I went to the doctors and asked how many days a vigorous cholera bacillus may live and multiply in running water. About seven, said they. My case was made." The story resulted in the purchase by New York City of areas around the New Croton Reservoir, and may well have saved New Yorkers from an epidemic of cholera. Riis tried hard to have the slums around Five Points demolished and replaced with a park. His writings resulted in the Drexel Committee's investigation of unsafe tenements; this resulted in the Small Park Act of 1887. Riis was not invited to the eventual opening of the park on June 15, 1897, but went all the same, together with Lincoln Steffens. In the last speech, the street cleaning commissioner credited Riis for the park and led the public in giving him three cheers of "Hooray, Jacob Riis!" Other parks also were created, and Riis was popularly credited with them as well.Source: Wikipedia
Alexander Anufriev
Alexander Anufriev is a Russian photographer, born in Ukhta (Komi Republic, Russia) in 1988. Before photography, Anufriev worked in international advertising agencies. Currently, he is a Moscow-based photographer who works on projects describing and analysing social landscape of contemporary Russia. Alexander Anufriev’s Russia Close-Up series is a zoomed-in look at what makes a modern Russia, through a highly subjective lens. He got the idea for it while he was studying at The Rodchenko Art School in Moscow, after becoming disillusioned with documentary photography. “At the time, it was important for me to tell stories and for them to be the truth, but it started to feel like a little bit of a lie,” he explains. “Even if you’re trying to be totally objective, it is always a bit subjective." “I stopped shooting for six months, and I was about to quit photography, but then I thought, ‘What if I tried to be completely subjective?’ So I cropped the images very tightly, and included only the elements I wanted to show. It was a farewell to convention.” Unconventional it may be, but the series has already had some success, exhibited in Cardiff, Sydney, and Saint Petersburg, and winning third place in the Moscow Photobookfest Dummy book award. Anufriev’s past projects have included a series on homeless people celebrating New Year’s Eve in a Moscow train station, and portraits of market sellers on the city’s streets. But for this project, he wanted find a way to visualise the mood of a whole country. Born in 1988, he doesn’t remember life in the Soviet Union, behind the Iron Curtain. But over the last few years, against a backdrop of political apathy, he has began to realise the underlying forces of patriotism and nationalism in modern Russia. This series is an attempt to bring the image of Russia up to date, he says. “There are inner processes that are not obvious to the rest of the world,” he adds, “the strengthening of censorship and propaganda. This series is an attempt to visualise these processes.”Source: British Journal of Photography
Lillian Bassman
United States
1917 | † 2012
Lillian Bassman (June 15, 1917 – February 13, 2012) was an American photographer and painter. Her parents were Jewish intellectuals who emigrated to the United States from Russia in 1905 and settled in Brooklyn, New York. She studied at the Textile High School in Manhattan with Alexey Brodovitch and graduated in 1933. While there, she met the photographer, Paul Himmel, and they were married in 1935; Himmel died in 2009 after 73 years of marriage. From the 1940s until the 1960s Bassman worked as a fashion photographer for Junior Bazaar and later at Harper's Bazaar where she promoted the careers of photographers such as Richard Avedon, Robert Frank, Louis Faurer and Arnold Newman. Under the guidance of the Russian emigrant, Alexey Brodovitch, she began to photograph her model subjects primarily in black and white. Her work was published for the most part in Harper’s Bazaar from 1950 to 1965. By the 1970s Bassman’s interest in pure form in her fashion photography was out of vogue. She turned to her own photo projects and abandoned fashion photography. In doing so she tossed out 40 years of negatives and prints - her life’s work. A forgotten bag filled with hundreds of images was discovered over 20 years later. Bassman’s fashion photographic work began to be re-appreciated in the 1990s. She worked with digital technology and abstract color photography into her 90s to create a new series of work. She used Photoshop for her image manipulation. The most notable qualities about her photographic work are the high contrasts between light and dark, the graininess of the finished photos, and the geometric placement and camera angles of the subjects. Bassman became one of the last great woman photographers in the world of fashion. Bassman died on February 13, 2012, at age 94. Source: Wikipedia Lillian Bassman was born in 1917 into an immigrant family of free-thinking intellectuals, and was brought up with a mindset that allowed her to live as an independent and unconventional woman.She worked as a textile designer and fashion illustrator before working at Harper's Bazaar with Alexey Brodovitch, and ultimately becoming a photographer. Bassman's fashion images are unique, and acheieve their effect through manipulation in the dark room. Appearing in Harper's Bazaar from the 1940's to the 1960's, her work was categorized by their elegance and grace.Bassman had transformed these photographs into original works of art through her darkroom techniques in which she blurs and bleaches the images, investing them with poetry, mystery, and glamour. Source: Staley-Wise Gallery Lillian Bassman is one of the great 20th century fashion photographers along with Irving Penn and Richard Avedon. She began her career not as a photographer but as a painter at the WPA and then took courses at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. In 1945, Bassman was appointed Art Director at Junior Bazaar, giving projects to photographers such as Richard Avedon, Robert Frank and Paul Himmel (her husband). Later in 1947, she became the Art Director at Harper’s Bazaar, and her work appeared in Harper’s Bazaar throughout the 1940’s and 50’s. Her work was nearly destroyed in the 70’s by a water leak in her studio, and it was not until the 1990’s that her work was revived. With this new spotlight, Bassman received the Agfa Life Time Achievement Award and the Dem Art Directors Club Award in 1996. During the same year, Bassman began photographing again when she was asked to photograph the Haute Couture collection for New York Times Magazine, the Autumn Collection for Neiman Marcus, as well as work for German Vogue. Her work has been exhibited worldwide. Source: Peter Fetterman Gallery
Mariska Karto
Netherlands
Mariska Karto is an artist/ fine art-photographer born in Suriname (South-America) and raised in the Netherlands. In this age of rapidity and technical development, in which human is exposed to impersonal detachment of current technical era, Mariska Karto creates the vulnerable and intensive dimensions of human feelings and emotions. This all happens in the dreamworld she has created with her technique in which past and present have found their way to each other, in this era of transformation.She talks to you in a language without words using symbolism in a dreamworld of historic paintings atmosphere.Mystique, tragic and erotic are the keywords for her work. Her work are like old stories escaped from an old world of eternal dreams, eternal emotions and eternal feelings that existed for hundred of years but still repeats themselves as in a pattern of an earthy rite, in this new modern contemporary era.Her works are like poems and thoughts, restless ones but are also like whispers of thoughtless experiences, floating in a centuries long movement in time.Artist Statement"My work is based on a period in which photography did not exist, It was not until the end of the 18th century that it was invented. As a result of this, people thought that photography would make the art of painting disappear, especially in the post modern era, the traditional art had to make way for new technical developments. In my work I seek and found a respectful connection of technique and traditional craft through a striking contradiction. Painters in the Baroque/renaissance time were trying to paint as true-to-life with painting-techniques and color applications. What a camera does is portray the world in its realistic colors. That’s the contradiction in my work, it’s the other way around. I shoot realistic images and through an intensive transformation process, the work is changed, true-to-life in the characteristic Baroque colors and style of that time. Eventually, this says nothing about photography and technique, but more about the great masters of that gone era, they were able to be as realistic and accurate as possible with brush and paint the world in all its reality… That’s the great contradiction in my work, I’m leaving the visible reality of our current time, and bring the invisible realism of the past forward in my work. As a result of this, I pull away present time from its structure and then time appears to be just a definition, which slowly fades away, when current and past becomes interwoven with each other.” More background info: "I mix skills from different worlds together. It is a blend of skills of my (I'm originally a painter and sketcher, textiles - I was a textile artist some years ago, photography and image processing) that ultimately meets each other in this form of art. A main factor are also social emotional influences in my life which developed how I see, learn and finally understand things in an essential (psychological) way. All these (artistic) elements from different areas and personal influences come together in a work of mine."
Wiktor Franko
Poland
1983
Wiktor Franko, born in Kielce in 1983. He completed Polish Language Studies at the Swietokrzyska Academy, then got involved in photography and he has ever since been preoccupied with it. He deals with both fine art and commercial photography. His photographs have been published in a number of professional magazines, such as Prism Magazine, Camerapixo, Pokochaj Fotografie, Fabrikon Magazine, Musli Magazine, Confashion and a Chinese Prime Magazine. He exhibited his works at a few collective and individual exhibitions, and his photographs were awarded in a variety of photo contests - he was twice awarded in a prestigious Viva Photo Awards and two local contests Zycie Jest Piekne and Kielce Inaczej (he was a jury member with Pawel Pierscinski in the last two editions of Kielce Inaczej contest). Wiktor Franko was a collaborator of Charaktery magazine, and a number of his images were placed on the cover of that magazine. His photographs can also be found on book covers. On two occasions, he took photographs of famous people from the world of business, culture and politics, including a portrait photo depicting Malgorzata Tusk, Prime Minister's wife for Philanthropist's Calendar, a publication that is of importance for the region. Wiktor Franco is the author of three posters for The Off Fashion, a European contest for fashion designers that is held in Kielce. Initially, Wiktor's development as a photographer ran parallel to his stay in London, where he shot photos of jazz and rock music stars, including Marillion, King Crimson, Porcupine Tree, Archive, Chic Corea, Jan Garbarek. Currently, Wiktor is engaged in making music albums covers of Polish artists, including Strefa Ciszy, Lebowski. In his photographs, Wiktor Franko frequently uses literary motifs and allusions (a cycle devoted to Milan Kundera's novels). His works, strongly influenced by surrealism, are often defined as painterly. As he himself says, what is most important for him in photography is the atmosphere, a particular mood and surprise.Source: Galeria Winda
Ed Sievers
United States
1932 | † 2002
Ed Sievers was born in 1932 in St. Louis, MO, the son of a family doctor that made house calls and an aspiring opera singer. He attended Grinnell College, graduating with a degree in Speech in 1954. His first job was as a creative writer for Hallmark Cards. The slogans he penned were notable for the wry wit and wisdom with which he commented on the human condition. At the same time, his interest in the arts was expanding from the literary to the visual, and would ultimately lead him in a new direction. In 1966 he was accepted into the MFA program at the Rhode Island School of Design to study photography with Harry Callahan. Upon graduation in 1968 he joined the faculty of California State University, Northridge, as a specialist in fine art photography. He took up residence in the Carlton Hotel in Venice Beach and soon realized he had walked into a street photographer's dream. Originally designed as a resort community modeled after its Italian namesake, Venice had fallen on hard times. Buildings were in disrepair and rents were cheap. Influenced by the Bohemian lifestyle of its poets, artists, students and a struggling lower class, the boardwalk suddenly sprang to life. There were musicians, dancers, jugglers, mimes, magicians, comedians, roller skaters, fortune tellers, gritty street people and colorful hippies. And, of course, there was the sprawling nude beach. Throngs of gapers flocked from throughout Southern California to enjoy the expressive spirit of the moment. But that was only on weekends. A quieter, more sensitive mood prevailed during the week. The gentle gestures of holocaust survivors at the Israel Levin Center. The recovering alcoholics quietly heading home after Al-Anon meetings. The homeless searching for food and drink. The once cheerful cottages longing for attention. The iconic murals. The myopic murals. The motions of a people not sure of what lay ahead. Within a decade the Venice that Ed knew had been swallowed up by rampant commercialism and the inexorable influx of the nouveau riche. Upon his death in 2002, the Edwin R. Sievers Memorial Award was established to share his vision with future students; "His approach to photography was straight forward: use the nuances of available light to enhance the subject, whatever that may be: ordinary, quirky, or sublime." Source: Robert Mann Gallery
Jean-Pierre Laffont
Jean-Pierre Laffont attended the School of Graphic Art in Vevey, Switzerland, where he graduated with a Master's Degree in Photography. He was a founding member of the Gamma USA and Sygma Photo News agencies. For more than five decades, Laffont traveled the globe, covering the news, the people, and the social and economic issues of his time. His photos were published in the world's leading news magazines, including Le Figaro, London Sunday Times, Newsweek, Paris Match, Stern, and Time. He was named one of the one hundred most important people in photography. Among the numerous awards Laffont has received are the Overseas Press Club of America's Madeline Dane Ross Award, the World Press Photo General Picture Award, University of Missouri's World Understanding Award and First Prize from the New York Newspaper Guild. In 1996 he was honored with the National French Order of Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres (a Knight in the National French Order of Arts and Letters). In 2016 Jean Pierre was named International Photographer of the Year of the Pingyao Photo Festival in China. In 2020 he received The Lucie Award for Achievement in Photojournalism and The Visa D'Or Award du Figaro Magazine for Lifetime Achievement. Laffont resides in New York with his wife Eliane, his daughter and his two granddaughters. Awards and Honors: 1962: Cross for Military Valor for his humanitarian acts during the Algerian War 1979: First Prize: New York Newspaper Guild, for "Child Labor"; Overseas Press Club: Madeline Dane Ross award, for originating the use of photography to raise awareness of child labor conditions around the world. 1980: World Press: First Prize, General Picture category; University of Missouri, School of Journalism: First Prize, World Understanding Award 1996: French National Order of Merit: named Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres 2016: International Photographer of the year of The Pingyao Photo Festival; China. 2020: Lucie Award for Achievement in Photojournalism. 2020: Visa D'Or Award du Figaro Magazine for Lifetime Achievement. Bibliography: Contribution to the A Day in the Life Series (HarperCollins): 1983: A day in the life of Hawaii 1984: A day in the life of Canada 1985: A day in the life of Japan 1986: A day in the life of United States 1987: A day in the life of Spain 1987: A day in the life of USSR 1989: A day in the life of China 1990: A day in the life of Italy 1991: A day in the life of Ireland 1992: A day in the life of Hollywood Other Selected Publications: 1986: The Long March (Intercontinental Press); in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Mao Zedong's historical Long March 1989: Trois Jour en France (Nathan/France) 1992: America Then and Now (Cohen/HarperCollins) 1999: Les 100 photos du Siècle (Editions du Chêne) 2003: America 24/7 in Manhattan (NY State) 2011: The New York Times Magazine: Photographs (Aperture Foundation) 2013: 40 ans de Photojournalisme: Generation Sygma (Editions de La Martinière/France) Monographs: 1976: CB Bible, Porter Bibb (Doubleday) 1981: Women of Iron (Playboy) 2008: Jean-Pierre Laffont Foreign Correspondent (Editions C.D.P/France) 2014: Photographer's Paradise: Turbulent America 1960-1990: (Glitterati) named best picture book by The Lucie Awards 2017: New York City Up and Down: (Glitterati) 2019: Nos Stars en Amèrique Cartes postales de Jean Pierre Laffont: (Editions de La Martinière) For special print requests please contact us directly.
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