Monthly Archive for March, 2009

audrey bardou – brigitte et bernard

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Audrey Bardou

Brigitte et Bernard

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I’d like to introduce you to my parents Brigitte and Bernard; exceptional, yet anonymous

They aren’t exceptional in the sense that we hear about them in our society, but in the the values that they have infused in me: humanism, integrity, generosity, and courtesy.

On advice of Magnum Photos photographer David Alan Harvey, I started to photograph them: “I am thinking your parents to be perhaps the best of your two choices (other choice teenage friend)…first of all, photographing your parents cannot wait til later……you cannot take your parents for granted… should photograph them now…now is all we have… you can find another teenager, but you cannot find other parents…if your parents will let you really dig in and work, then i would say go with them for your essay….you have nothing to lose by trying….and the worst you will have is a nice family document…the best you can have will be a beautiful personal essay.”

My mother and my father don’t understand my interest in photographing them eating, sleeping or simply setting the table. Recently my Father fell ill, old age catching up with him. I love my parents. I love photographing them. My photographs aren’t about social issues. They are a work of love. But isn’t the act of love an underground fight for change?

translation : Erica McDonald


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Audrey Bardou


going to school….

NYU’s Department of Photography & Imaging announces a new program in photography and human rights in partnership with the Magnum Foundation

The Department of Photography and Imaging in the Kanbar Institute of Film and Television at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, has announced a new partnership with the Magnum Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting documentary photography, to create a new certificate program in Photography and Human Rights. The new initiative, comprising four courses offered in two successive summers, is designed to explore strategies to create effective documentary projects linked with issues of human rights.

“We are delighted to be able to partner with the Magnum Foundation to offer this important new program,” said Mary Schmidt Campbell, dean of the Tisch School of the Arts. “The role of photography in the global struggle for basic human rights has never been more important than it is today. Experience demonstrates that one image can make all the difference. This program’s emphasis will be on the relevance of human rights law to documentary work, and how the photographer can develop projects that aid in the attainment of those basic rights.”

The program is aimed at intermediate and advanced students, including experienced professionals, who seek to hone their documentary and media skills in the context of human rights. Students will be taught to utilize a variety of media approaches while emphasizing new digital possibilities to create maximum social impact. Each course is four weeks in length and will be offered over two successive summers, beginning May 18, 2009. Students may choose to take the courses for credit or non credit.

Faculty for the program will include: Magnum photographers Susan Meiselas and Gilles Peress, digital media specialists Catherine Fallon and Elizabeth Kilroy, adjunct professor and human rights specialist Peter Lucas, and program director and associate chair of Photography & Imaging, Fred Ritchin, among others.

Concurrent with the program, the Magnum Foundation will organize lectures and film screenings on issues relating to documentary work and human rights that feature a variety of work, including projects by Magnum photographers.

For more information on this program, please visit or call 212-998-1930. For more information about The Magnum Foundation, please visit To enroll in the course, please visit

The Department of Photography and Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts is a four-year B.F.A. program centered on the making and understanding of images. Students explore photo-based imagery as personal and cultural expression. Situated within a university, the program offers students both the intensive focus of an arts curriculum and a serious and broad grounding in the liberal arts. The faculty and staff consist of artists, professional photographers, designers, critics, historians, and scholars working from a wide range of perspectives and media.

Launched in 2007, The Magnum Foundation works to bring over half a century of historical and iconic photography to the public and to encourage the work of a new generation of independent photographers.

yury toropstov – marilyn and i

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Yury Toropstov

Marilyn And I

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“Marilyn and I” is a tribute to Marilyn Monroe and her fans. It started in 2005 when I got access to an authentic summer dress from the personal wardrobe of Marilyn Monroe. It became an essential element of my project. With the dress folded in my backpack I went to photograph men and women of all ages and social backgrounds who share at least one thing in common – a strong personal attachment to Marilyn Monroe. I wanted to know what kind of relation Marilyn Monroe’s admirers have with her image today. Why the myth of Marilyn does goes on?

For all those people who became my models, the encounter with the dress which touched the body of their idol was very emotional. With my camera I tried to capture that emotion. The dress served a material evidence of the passed existence of Marilyn. It was a moment when the real met the imaginary because for most of them Marilyn existed only in photographs, movies and of course in their imagination. And for me, the dress was a pretext for doing something I enjoy most in my profession – photographing people.

(The title slide depicts the photo of the dress wrapped in a protective pH neutral paper.)


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Yury Toropstov


laura boushnak – survivor



Cluster Bomb Survivor by Laura Boushnak

Mohammed’s prosthetic legs lay on the sofa at his home in the Palestinian refugee camp of Rashidiyeh in Tyre. Mohammed lost both legs when he was sitting behind his father on a motorbike and drove over a cluster bomb near Tyre in the last week of Israel-Hezbollah war. According to the UN demining organization, more than thirty people were killed and more than 230 wounded by cluster bombs dropped during the 2006 war in Lebanon. Handicap International says children make up 24% of casualties.


Website: Laura Boushnak


herve blandin – brides



Brides of March by Herve Blandin

The Brides of March started as an annual Cacophony Society event that takes place in San Francisco around March 15th. Intended as a pun on the term Ides of March and a parody of weddings in western culture. The event, which began in 1999, is basically a pub crawl while wearing a thrift store wedding dress. Brides may be of either gender, but the wearing of traditional white wedding dresses, or something resembling them, is generally encouraged (Wikipedia).


Website: Herve Blandin


vasilios sfinarolakis – warmth



The Warmth of Isolation by Vasilios Sfinarolakis

We are never alone, but we are all lonely.

Website: Vasilios Sfinarolakis


david gimenez – emo kids



Los Emo Kids by David Gimenez

At first sight, Valencia, located in the Spanish Mediterranean Coast, could give an impression of being a conservative city. But in Fallas, one of the most world popular Spanish festivities, everything changes, especially at night. The mixture of fireworks, typical costumes, food, chaos, friendship, religion, alcohol and drugs give a peculiar atmosphere to the city.

Walking along the crowded “Barrio del Carmen”, the beautiful old center of the city, you can find many interesting people.

One of those nights, I found a group of Emo kids. Fancy dressed teenagers, perfectly eye lined, and tight jeans.

You don’t need to ask them to take pictures of them, actually they will ask you. They love themselves, and for that reason they want to check which shoots are good or not for approval.

This is one of my selected pictures for the final slideshow of the Photo Workshop Fallas 2009, directed by David Alan Harvey, Anton Kusters and Luis Montolio. It’s the first one of a series called “moods” composed by several portraits looking the different moods at Fallas nights.


Website: David Gimenez


brian shumway – la chureca

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Brian Shumway

La Chureca

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La Chureca (‘the scavenger’) is located in Managua, Nicaragua and is home to one of the largest inhabited dump communities in the world. With a population of 1700 housed within its walls, over fifty percent of them are children under 18.  It is a permanent, living community where babies are born, children are raised and educated, and people work as recyclers, exposed to illness and environmental dangers.

On the surface, the people of La Chureca appear imprisoned within a trash dump, suffering extreme poverty, addiction, and health problems. However, in getting to know the youth, I witnessed something else: a richer, deeper life beyond the trash that is often ignored by visitors, such as myself, for the more shocking aspects of their lives. They have a childhood, develop meaningful relationships, and experience boredom and loneliness, like anyone else. These children, enduring brutal, dehumanizing living conditions, are still playful, curios, and passionate. Such simplicities can be forgotten when seeing people who literally live amid trash. It’s unimaginable, yet also a reality taken for granted by those who live there.

This series is intended to offer a fresh perspective and thus does not share the assumption that the people of La Chureca, and those in similar situations, endure a ceaselessly miserable existence. Devoid of the now familiar images of hordes of people picking through trash, shack homes on the verge of collapse, or naked children dangerously perched on mounds of filth, I tease out the mundane, everyday moments that draw us together as people and offer a deeper understanding of our common humanity.


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Brian Shumway


jan smith – c’est tout



C’est Tout by Jan Smith

There is a certain glory in what is constructed being defeated by the forces of time. Void of human habitation, a patina of self-identity emerges from the structures and substitutes the original man-made baptism of name and function. These spaces anthropomorphize when they are empty.

When we enter them, they die. With our presence they become shells for the purpose and habitation of our consciousness, and their essence retreats and surrenders its intangible namelessness. Such structures exist for themselves only when they are abandoned. Without stewards, they achieve this transformation in exchange for mortality and disappearance from our memory.

They live in a realm that shows itself and at the same time withdraws from us. Their acquired consciousness is like a horizon that defines itself by what we see, but also more largely by what remains veiled. The threshold of our arrival in these spaces leaves them balancing between the resurrection of our memory of them, and the renouncing of their own identity. In between these moments what remains is a subtle taste of time because it withdraws just in approaching us.

Gunkanjima, Japan

Its name translates as “Battleship Island” and is the nickname for Hashima Island in Nagasaki Prefecture. It functioned as a Mitsubishi owned under-sea coal mine from 1880 to 1974, and was key in shaping Japan’s industrialization. It holds Japan’s first large concrete housing project. At its peak it was home to over 5,000 workers and their families. At 1,391 persons per hectare it holds the record for highest population density ever recorded. Travel to Gunkanjima is prohibited.


Website: Jan Smith


federico caponi – wedding



Wedding Guests by Federico Caponi

Warsaw, Poland. Wedding guests playing with a doll.