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Manuel Armenis
Manuel Armenis
Manuel Armenis

Manuel Armenis

Country: Germany
Birth: 1971

Manuel Armenis is an award winning independent street and fine-art photographer based in Hamburg, Germany, dedicated to documenting daily life. He was born in Mannheim (Germany). He studied at Icart, École de Photographie in Paris (France), and at the University of the Arts in London (England). Since graduating he has been working as an independent filmmaker and photographer.

The emphasis of his practice is the realization of long-term projects with a focus on exploring the human condition within everyday and commonplace urban environments. Manuel´s work has been exhibited internationally in galleries in both solo and group shows. His photographs were published in leading contemporary photography magazines and online. He has received numerous awards, including 1. prize winner at the Sony World Photography Awards in 2018, and has been a finalist at the LensCulture Street Photography Awards in 2017 and at the Meitar Award for Excellence in Photography in 2019, among others. Manuel currently lives and works as a freelance photographer in Hamburg, Germany.

About Diamond Days

The quintessential trait of the mundane is, of course, its lack of spectacle. It is recognizable to us, familiar, in its plainness and with its non-event-character. Due to those alleged properties it is a world that gets all too willingly labeled boring and banal. At times we might even feel offended by its lack of sophistication. We believe to know the mundane well, but, unimpressed by its unremarkable nature, we usually choose to look elsewhere. And yet, as much as we try to ignore it, there remains this suspicion that we might not be able to evade it. An inkling that it might contain something that keeps us connected.

The series Diamond Days is an exploration of the commonplace. We are shown snippets of the everyday, fragments of moments, ordinary situations. There is a playful touch to this world, a colorful lightness and warmth, a sense of joy; and yet, these unassuming landscapes seem to contain something else. Elusive. Layered. Ambiguous. A somewhat bleaker undercurrent which might pick up on the sensation of slight unease that we often associate with the ordinary.

By carrying signs of human behavior and a way of living, the ordinary provides us with a rendering of the now. But it also contains references to a time gone by and challenges us to look back. It exposes our need to make sense of our lives and raises the tricky question of what could have been. It confronts us with the notion of missed opportunities and unfulfilled dreams. And it reveals our disposition to fill any void with nostalgia.
 

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David Johndrow
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David Johndrow is a fine art photographer living in Austin, Texas. After studying photography the University of Texas, he began shooting commercial work as well as pursuing his more personal fine art photography.David’s continuing series, Terrestrials, combines his passion for gardening and photography and features macro nature photographs of animals and plants that inhabit his Hill Country, Texas garden. To realize his vision, he prints with silver gelatin, platinum/palladium, gum-bichromate and gumoil.His photographs are part of the Wittliff Collection of Southwestern and Mexican Photography, as well as in many private collections.All about David Johndrow:AAP: When did you realize you wanted to be a photographer?I took a darkroom class in art school and fell in love with the process. The first roll of film I shot I processed and printed myself.AAP: Where did you study photography?I learned photography at The University of Texas, but I built my own darkroom and started working on my own. I really honed my printing skills working as a printer in a photo lab. Just the shear volume of work I printed during that time made me a better printer.AAP: Do you have a mentor or role model?I can’t say I had any mentors except for photographers like Irving Penn who I loved and was inspired by.AAP: How long have you been a photographer?I’ve been a photographer for 30 years.AAP: Do you remember your first shot? What was it?My first shot was of my friends who were in a band. I had other friends who were actors and comedians, so I started taking lots of portraits for peoples publicity shots.AAP: What or who inspires you?I am inspired creatively by many different kinds of artists, but my biggest inspiration is the natural world. Rarely do I go in search of photographs; rather things just appear to me when I spend enough time outdoors. Gardening is my biggest obsession next to art.AAP: How could you describe your style?I have lots of styles but my most well know work is done in macro. I guess the one common thing in all my work is a simple graphic composition.AAP: Do you have a favorite photograph or series? I love Matt Mahurin, especially his portraits of Tom Waits. AAP: What kind of gear do you use?I shoot with a Hasselblad on 120 film.AAP: Do you spend a lot of time editing your images?Although I shoot on film, I edit my images on the computer. It helps me group images in a series or arrange them for exhibition.AAP: Favorite(s) photographer(s)?My favorite photographer is Irving Penn.AAP: What advice would you give a young photographer?I would tell young photographers to shoot a lot of images, do a lot of experiments, and try to learn some different printing processes.AAP: What mistake should a young photographer avoid?Don’t try and shoot photos of things you think others would like but shoot subjects you are most interested in. Every subject has been done before, so try and put your own spin on it.AAP: What are your projects?The project I’m working on is close-ups of natural textures.AAP: Your best memory as a photographer?My best memory is of shooting the pyramid at Chichen Itsa. It was at the solstice and I wanted a photo of the serpent shadow on the steps, but it was a cloudy, rainy day. Suddenly, right before closing, the sun burst out and I got some great shots.AAP: Your worst souvenir as a photographer?Don’t knowAAP: The compliment that touched you most?“Every time I look at your photograph I see something different”.AAP: If you were someone else who would it be?No one else.AAP: Your favorite photo book?Irving Penn: Passages
David Goldblatt
South Africa
1930 | † 2018
David Goldblatt was born in 1930 in Randfontein, South Africa. He has photographed the structures, people and landscapes of his country since 1948. In 1989, Goldblatt founded the Market Photography Workshop in Johannesburg. In 1998 he was the first South African to be given a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In 2001, a retrospective of his work, David Goldblatt Fifty-One Years began a tour of galleries and museums. He was one of the few South African artists to exhibit at Documenta 11 (2002) and Documenta 12 (2007) in Kassel, Germany. He has held solo exhibitions at the Jewish Museum and the New Museum, both in New York. His work was included in the exhibition ILLUMInations at the 54th Venice Biennale in 2011, and has featured on shows at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and Barbican Centre in London and in 2018, a major retrospective at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. Goldblatt is the recipient of the 2006 Hasselblad award, the 2009 Henri Cartier-Bresson Award, the 2013 ICP Infinity Award and in 2016, he was awarded the Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres by the Ministry of Culture of France.Source: Goodman Gallery He shot mostly in black-and-white for much of his career. In 1998 the Museum of Modern Art in New York gave him a solo exhibition. Its 40 photographs were all black-and-white because, he explained, "color seemed too sweet a medium to express the anger, disgust and fear that apartheid inspired." But in the 1990s Mr. Goldblatt began working in color, adapting to the digital age. "I’ve found the venture into color quite exciting," he said in 2011, "largely because new technology has enabled me to work with color on the computer as I have done with black and white in the darkroom."Source: The New York Times David Goldblatt was South African photographer known for his uncompromising images of his country during apartheid and afterward. “I was very interested in the events that were taking place in the country as a citizen but, as a photographer, I’m not particularly interested, and I wasn’t then, in photographing the moment that something happens. I’m interested in the conditions that give rise to events,” he once explained. Born on November 29, 1930 in Randfontein, South Africa, he began photographing at an early age but his father’s illness required Goldblatt to run his family business while studying at Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg. After selling the company in 1963, Goldblatt focused entirely on a career in photography. His involvement with various artistic circles in Johannesburg granted him access to a broad range of ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Though he refused to belong to any political organization and argued that his photographs should not be used for propaganda purposes, his works were presented in an exhibition organized by an anti-apartheid photographer’s collective in 1990. In 1998, Goldblatt became the first South African artist to have a solo exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. The artist died on June 25, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Today, his photographs are held in the collections of the South African National Gallery in Cape Town, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Switzerland, among others.Source: Artnet
Dorrie Mcveigh
United States/United Kingdom
1975
I am a British fashion, portrait and art photographer, born in New York into a family of artists, my family emigrated to London in the late 70's where I grew up in an around west London. I have travelled a lot over the years, perhaps always searching for my allegorical "homeland". I finally settled in Marseille, a city I love more than any other and I have been living and working here for the last 8 years. My photography has become a means for me to forage into my unconscious and reveal the world as I see it. Having grown up in a country that is not my homeland, I am fascinated by what unites, separates and defines us a humans and I am aware that my images are born from this. Since a young age I have always been captivated by the classical elements of tragedy. At school I studied the plays of Sophocles and Euripides, seduced and fascinated by the notions of hubris and hamartia and how even the most powerful amongst us can be just a breath away from fragility and loss. I fell in love with the plays of Shakespeare in my final years at school, my favourite being Macbeth. There is something acutely touching in watching the fall of somebody great. I am drawn to the idea that as their ego and influence crumble and the mirrors of the ego fall away we can that find that beneath a humanity that has so much more potential for beauty, tenderness and creativity then when we are alone on the pedestal of power. Whilst I am drawn to the iconography and sheen of modern life, I find what really interests me is to strip this back to reveal the fragile, quiet and some times empty spaces that lie beneath. I have always loved the paintings of Edward Hopper whose work encapsulates so perfectly the constant possibility for loneliness and vulnerability in our fast lives whilst also reminding us that it is these moments that are perhaps the most poignant. I work as a fashion and portrait photographer but essentially I am an artist and I am always looking for opportunities to express myself through my photography whether it be through my commercial work or in my personal projects. Exclusive Interview with Dorrie Mcveigh
Steve McCurry
United States
1950
Steve McCurry has been one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than 30 years, with scores of magazine and book covers, over a dozen books, and countless exhibitions around the world to his name. Born in a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; McCurry studied film at Pennsylvania State University, before going on to work for a local newspaper. After several years of freelance work, McCurry made his first of what would become many trips to India. Traveling with little more than a bag of clothes and another of film, he made his way across the subcontinent, exploring the country with his camera. It was after several months of travel that he found himself crossing the border into Pakistan. There, he met a group of refugees from Afghanistan, who smuggled him across the border into their country, just as the Russian Invasion was closing the country to all western journalists. Emerging in traditional dress, with full beard and weather-worn features after weeks embedded with the Mujahedeen, McCurry brought the world the first images of the conflict in Afghanistan, putting a human face to the issue on every masthead. Since then, McCurry has gone on to create stunning images on all seven continents and countless countries. His work spans conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions and contemporary culture alike - yet always retains the human element that made his celebrated image of the Afghan Girl such a powerful image. McCurry has been recognized with some of the most prestigious awards in the industry, including the Robert Capa Gold Medal, National Press Photographers Award, and an unprecedented four first prize awards from the World Press Photo contest. The Minister of French Culture has also appointed McCurry a Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters and most recently, the Royal Photographic Society in London awarded McCurry the Centenary Medal for Lifetime Achievement. McCurry has published books including The Imperial Way (1985), Monsoon (1988), Portraits (1999), South Southeast (2000), Sanctuary (2002), The Path to Buddha: A Tibetan Pilgrimage (2003), Steve McCurry (2005), Looking East (2006), In the Shadow of Mountains (2007), The Unguarded Moment, (2009), The Iconic Photographs (2011), Untold: The Stories Behind the Photographs (2013), From These Hands: A Journey Along the Coffee Trail (2015), India (2015), and On Reading (2016), Afghanistan (2017), A Life in Pictures (2018), Animals (2019). @stevemccurryofficial
Javier Arcenillas
Freelance photographer. Degree in Evolutionary Psychology from the Complutense University of Madrid, he is Professor of documentary photography at the PICA School of PHE and editor of photographic projects. 
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The project that conceptualizes in images, maps and graphics the UFO phenomenon offers us places where these strange appearances have entered a unique subculture in the environment, endowing it with a singular energy. In the year 2016 La Fabrica publishes a Photobolsillo within the Photographers Spanish collection. His most complete news articles outside Spain can be read in Time, CNN, IL Magazine, Leica Magazine, Der Spiegel, Stern, Esquire, GEO, El Mundo, PAPEL, VICE News, TRIP, Matador, Man on the Moon, L´Expresso, Zazpika, Primera Linea, El País Semanal, Planeta Futuro, Libero, Gatopardo, El Confidencial, El periódico de Guatemala, Sputnik News as most important magazines. His work is distributed by the Agency LUZ. CITY HOPE Since the mid-nineties settlements bordering on rubbish dumps in the major capitals of Central America and Caribean have experienced a radical transformation. Now a days there are numerous families living in the recycling of waste in these macrociudades of disposable plastic or glass, their economic survival depends on it. Neighborhoods such as La Esperanza in Guatemala, La Duquesa on the Dominican Republic or in Managua Acahualinca fairly communities adapted to the collection of waste in landfills. This essay shows how and where they live hundreds of people in Latin America whose work is not the collection of organic waste. LATIDOAMERICA Latidoamerica is a Photojournalistic Research project that describes and analyzes violence in Central America, one of the most dangerous places in the world documenting the direct consequences of violence Sumida in revolutions, dictatorships, genocides, wars or political lack of control inheriting in each country, these Societies use the fear learned in their worst years to coexist daily with death and criminality in each city. This inheritance that left so much death has transformed the way of thinking and acting in the area. Today, a large part of its citizens live in fear and insecurity of certain death by firearm, rape, aggression, extortion, kidnapping and murder. Since the end of hostilities in countries like El Salvador, the young people who emigrated due to the war in the United States returned as street soldiers with new laws and regulations. The gangs known as "Maras" are responsible for that fear in which they live because they have bloodied any attempt at peaceful democratic socialization and have led the country to a new undeclared war in which Salvadorans are the victims. Similar circumstances in Guatemala where after years of dictatorship, genocide and death professions like that of Sicario end up seducing the poorest young people for the fear and respect they instill. The hired killer recruits teenagers attracted to fast money. Her main game is fear and her job is intimidation and death. In order to ‘graduate' these assassins murder a person on the condition that the situation involves risk. But it is not the only problem, in these countries without war where deaths from violence occur every hour, their social portrait is considered the most terrifying place in the world according to the United Nations. In Honduras, its geographical value is a place of transit for drug trafficking, a constant fight by drug cartels, a country that does not generate social policies. It is the heartbeat of America. CITIZENS OF DESPAIR More than years after his expulsion from Myanmar, thousands of unregistered Rohingya refugees living in makeshift camp Kutupalong, Bangladesh, have been forcibly displaced from their homes, in an act of intimidation and abuse of local authorities. Some international organizations have been treating many people for injuries where the majority were women and children victims of rejection and the disdain and the situation seems to be moving to nowhere. The Rohingya are a small Muslim ethnic group have for years been fleeing the northern Rakhine state of Myanmar which were subject to cruel of Abandonment, violence and exploitation. AmA The story begins like this... "In Genesis there was only the sea. Everything was dark, neither sun nor moon, the water was the mother and her cloak covered everything." For indigenous people there is no difference between dream or reality, day and night, visible or invisible.... Everything is equally real with the eyes open or with them closed. The native, like Alicia, pierces the mirror of appearances naturally but not always with tranquility because if the imaginary is sobering it also has its black and white. EdeN is a story, an illusion that we build in its most spiritual and dreamy emotional state. For generations, indigenous people have explored light and the subconscious on trips beyond reason about a latent unreality of space / time, that origin is found in the need for mastery of the cosmos. They are dreams materialized in a hidden place of the mind. In a meeting of two worlds their universes divide or intertwine over water or earth, the ground and the stars, consciousness and matter. The project embraces an imaginative and unreal photography that plays with illusion and fable as a different form of viewing. That exploration that directs us to delve into the narrative forms of visual expression.
Arnaud Gaertner
France
1966
Born in 1966 in Nancy, France. Gaertner moved to Pennsylvania, US at the age of 3-6 (learned arnaud gaertnerto drink milk at school and sing the national anthem, never stopped!). He then spent 5 years in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from age 10 to 16. Gaertner then travelled all over South America. He moved to Belgium for two years at the age of 16 and spent the next 12 years in in France. He took thousands of photos while traveling in North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Middle East. He has resided in the Bay Area since 2012 with his wife Marine and their four sons. Gaertner is an explorer of California and its wonders.Series “In the middle of nowhere”, 2014In the middle of the Back Rock Desert, Nevada. In that Middle of Nowhere, 70 000 people camp in total autonomy for one week on a 30 million old dried lake, and on the main square, dozens, hundreds of art pieces, static or moving, are there, subject to the weather conditions: extreme heat, wind, dust storm. Most of the wooden art pieces are burned by the end of the week. As we speak all these moments are gone, people have left, art pieces returned into ashes, and I am glad these ephemeral moments are still alive through my photographs. This series is about the Ephemeral nature and Mystical dimension of the American desert.Artist statementBy 16 years of age, I had already visited more than 30 countries and had lived abroad, away from my home country France, for close to10 years in the United States, Brazil and Belgium. This decade opened my eyes to the diversity of the world, seen through its landscapes, people, cultures, sounds and tastes. I love people. I love getting to know others better. I love trying to understand who people are and what it is that makes them who they are. I made my first pictures when my Dad let me borrow his old camera while we were discovering the world, then he bought me a Kodak with Cube Flashes-this was my first camera and I have never stopped taking pictures since then. As an adult, I continue exploring all the continents. Photography keeps me connected to the magic of the planet. During my travels I have taken thousands of photos :f rom nature to cities, from diverse subjects to artists in their studios. This project, “In The Middle of Nowhere”, was born in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada, in September 2014. My son Baptiste had come to me and said “Dad, a friend of mine just came back from a crazy art festival in the desert called Burning Man”. Curious, we researched it and discovered something strange and amazing. For my first time at Burning Man I stayed only 3 days, but I took over 3000 pictures! My camera lens ended up ull of dust, but that probably added to the mystery of my images and the “sense of nowhere” I felt deeply. In the middle of nowhere, under 100 degrees Fahrenheit, cycling on a lake that dried 30 million years ago, 70 000 people live in total autonomy for one week where no money is exchanged, and hundreds of art pieces, static or moving, under the heat, in a dust storm, are admired by visitors in very creative costumes. Everything is burned by the end of the festival in a ritual of true “Ephemeral Art!” I seek to testify for the ephemeral, fleeting nature of these art pieces and unique moments made lasting by the photographic image. I try to capture the place, light, dusty wind that surround this eclectic eccentric happening. For this project I have selected about 30 im- ages out of 3000, helped by my two friends Gino Castoriano and Jules Maeght who are both gallerists. “In The Middle of Nowhere” is about people, places and art—those unique, ephemeral moments I capture through my images and that I want to share with you.
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