“Its a bad feeling. His shooting has been rough on the whole family. No one ever thought it would happen to us. Crime is all over the city. When it hits your family – that’s when you realise its bad.”
R. A. Salazar (shooting victim’s son & Houston police officer)
Drugs and the availability of powerful automatic hand guns brought a homicide epidemic to our large cities in the 1990s. A good number of the victims are innocent children, killed by random gunfire. Houston, a sprawling city in the heart of Texas, was number four in 1991 with over 700 murders. These photos were taken in Houston in 1992 and 1994 (and Philadelphia in 1994). The issue documented in these photos is no longer front page news. Gun violence in 2015 is way down.
Most of the murders in Houston occurred in ghetto areas. The ghetto was never “nice”, but in the past it was a family-oriented, relatively safe place. The ghetto is a different world today. Rather than a community of supporting neighbours, too many areas have become hostile, unsafe locations where murder is commonplace.
The problem is bad for all youth, but African-American teens face a particular challenge. Homicide is the number one cause of death for young black males – placing an entire generation at risk.
But make no mistake. This is not only about victims – it is also about a generation of killers who came of age in the 1990s. These young people who grew up on ghetto streets are angry. Today, young people have a greater access to guns – often automatic weapons – and a willingness to use them without remorse.
These photos are shocking. But they should not surprise us. In a sense, this set of photos is about what happens to the abused and neglected children we saw in Outside the Dream. While the parents of these children cannot and should not escape blame for failing their children – neither can we.
doc! #32 (pp. 41-67)
Also read interview with Stephen Shames – Photojournalism Is About The Search For Truths About Life @ doc! #32 (pp. 29-39)
„The watching are these who create the image.”
The Thanksgiving series by Natalia Wiernik is an attempt to summarise considerations on how we see, perceive, what happens when we are trying to remember something, design, make a specific image (view an event) come into view. Then we often tend to fall into mythologizing: the past is easily glorified, and the process of memorising is extremely subjective. Certain images-memories, which we try to materialise after some time, take on archetypal characteristics.
„In my work I would like to merge the role of subject selection, opening on the case, recording through the camera and techniques. A long-term and multi-step process of creating the image, filled with searching for the presence, tangibility, physicality, multidimensionality is the key” – says Natalia Wiernik.
This search is a kind of specific crystallisation, which results in a work that is on the border of photography, graphics and painting, being the effect of various experiments and research, the image located somewhere in-between of these worlds.
Natalia Wiernik (b. 1989) | based In Cracow (Poland) | winner of the first edition of DEBUTS, which aims to promote the most talented emerging Polish photographers | graduate of the Cracow’s Academy of Fine Arts | a PhD student at the same academy (since 2013) | double scholar of the Ministry of Science an Higher Education (2013 and 2015) | beneficiary of Young Poland Scholarship for the achievements in the field of visual arts | her works get recognition all over the world, frequently awarded in international festivals: New York Photography Awards, Sony World Photography Awards, PDN Photo Annual, International Photography Awards and many others | collaborator of the International Cultural Centre in Cracow (since 2012).
Natalia Wiernik – THANKSGIVING
Pusta Gallery (2 Sejm Slaski Sq., Katowice, Poland) Grand opening: June 26 at 6:00 PM. The exhibition will be open to the public until August 30, 2015.
The exhibition is organised under contra doc! patronage.
The third edition of Eastreet – a project dedicated to street and documentary photography of the broadly defined Eastern Europe – is closer and closer. For the third time photographers – both: professional as well as amateur – working in Eastern Europe will present their the best photographs in a form of exhibition and photo book. The photographs will allow to look at Eastern Europe beyond the stereotypes, boundaries and differences; to show its current status and target unique features.
Almost 10.000 photos were submitted to this year’s open call by the authors from all over the world. The team of five curators (Aleksander Bochenek, George Georgiou, Joanna Kinowska, Tomasz Kulbowski and Grzegorz Ostręga) chosen 82 pictures of 69 photographers coming from 18 countries to be featured at the exhibition and in a photo book which the first public presentation will take place @ Lublin’s Workshops of Culture (5a Grodzka St.) on July 10, 2015 at 7:00 PM.
The photographers selected for this year’s edition of Eastreet: Ana Alexandrescu, Julia Autz, Siarhei Balai, Norman Behrendt, Marek M. Berezowski, Aliaksei Bibikau, Maciej Biedrzycki, M. Scott Brauer, Maksym Chychynskyi, Paolo Ciregia, Paulina Czarnecka, Michał Czarnecki, Tomasz Desperak, Anargyros Drolapas, Nikolay Dutkin, Garry Efimov, David Gaberle, Maciej Gapiński, Emil Gataullin, George Gavrilakis, Florin Ghebosu, Reinis Hofmanis, Julie Hrudová, Eleni Ioannidou, Mikhail Izopeskov, Jadwiga Janowska (DEBUTS 2015), Adrian Jaszczak (DEBUTS 2015), Evgeny Kamenev, Christos Kapatos, Athanasios Karatzas, Zisis Kardianos, Andreas Katsakos, Ertugrul Kilic, Ivan Kleymenov, Evgeniya Kurtina, Monika Łopacka, George Marazakis, Galia Nazaryants, Maria Novoselova, Paul Osipoff, Oguz Ozkan, Haris Panagiotakopoulos, Marina Paulenka, Aleksandra Perović Mihajlovic, Serge Poliakov, Anton Polyakov, Sergey Poteryaev, Kateryna Radchenko, Marta Rybicka, Juliya Skorobogatova, Stavros Stamatiou, Magdalena Świtek (DEBUTS 2015), Karol Szymkowiak, Hajdu Tamas, Denis Taraskin, Vasile Catalin Tomoiaga, Darya Trofimova, Vladimir Troyan, Aleksey Tudakov, Andrey Tulnov, Balázs Varga, Lukas Vasilikos, Tomasz Wiechnik, Natalia Wierzbicka, Krzysztof Wójcik, Yauhen Yerchak, Vadim Zamirovski, Spiros Zervoudakis and Maxim Zhuravko.
The idea of the project is constantly evolving – Eastreet is not only an exhibition, but also a platform of dialogue, integration and education for photographers working in Eastern Europe. This year the exhibition will be accompanied by an education programme dedicated to various aspects of documentary photography, theory and practice:
|July 10, 2015||10:00 AM – 06:00 PM||Urban Geographies (part 1) – documentary photography workshops with George Georgiou|
|July 11, 2015||10:00 AM – 06:00 PM||Urban Geographies (part 2) – documentary photography workshops with George Georgiou|
|11:00 AM – 02:00 PM||Thinking Photography – lecture by Joanna Kinowska|
|03:00 PM – 05:00 PM||Sputnik Goes to the East – presentation of Sputnik Photos by Agnieszka Rayss (doc! #5 & cd! #3)|
|06:00 Pm – 08:00 PM||Last Stop – slideshow and author’s meeting with George Georgiou|
|July 12, 2015||11:00 AM – 06:00 PM||Urban Geographies (part 3) – documentary photography workshops with George Georgiou|
|12:00 Pm – 04:00 PM||The Art of Choice – photo editing workshop with Aleksander Bochenek and Grzegorz Ostręga|
All workshops, slideshows and meetings will take place in the Centre for Culture (12 Peowiakow St., Lublin, Poland).
Workshops of Culture (5a Grodzka St., Lublin, Poland). Grand opening and premiere of the photo book: July 10 at 7:00 PM. The exhibition will be open to the public until July 31, 2015.
More info @ www.eastreet.eu
Eastreet 3 is organised under doc! photo magazine patronage.
São Paulo is the largest city in Latin America with over 20 million inhabitants. This series discusses the result of uncontrolled growth of the metropolis, and the lack of planning of public policies in all sectors of society: housing, security, health, and wellness, education and transportation and work.
The widespread and disregarded social system causes violent situations from a social point of view. The city is modernising architecturally at a high speed, while many areas deteriorate slowly, taking its residents to live in “invisible ghettos”.
In rich neighbourhoods, as in the rest of the city, you can see people looking for a job, a medical service or a place at school for their child. It is quite common to see men and women who have completely lost their social function, wandering to the end of another day of searching for their rights. There is a clear process of maintaining the intellectual and material poverty, assuming that the individuals lose gradually their essential rights and thus their identity.
The decrease in intensity of colour in the series demonstrates the annulment of collective identity, hopelessness, lack of future and more importantly: the deletion of existing real problems throughout the city of São Paulo.
For four years, I saw the city degradation and its consequences for inhabitants. The selection of these images shows this reflection.
doc! #32 (pp. 95-121)
Initiated in 2009 on the initiative of Waldemar Śliwczyński, the Wrzesnia Collection is a photographic archive of Wrzesnia, showing the “current state” of the city and its residents filtered through sensibility of one creator. Every year one photographer is invited to Wrzesnia to create his or her original photographic project. The author has a total creative freedom in the topic, the way it is presented and used photographic technique. Each project ends with exhibition and photo book, that create a unique collection of photography in Poland. The collection already includes projects by Bogdan Konopka (cd! #3; 2009), Andrzej Jerzy Lech (2010), Mariusz Forecki (2011), Nicolas Grospierre (2012) and Zbigniew Tomaszczuk (2013).
The next part of the Wrzesnia Collection has been prepared by Katarzyna Majak who was invited to Wrzesnia in 2014. Majak’s project – Capital – consists of two parts. The first one includes a series of contemporary portraits of people participating in the late documentary photographer from Wrzesnia – Ireneusz Zjeżdżałka – who in 2001 executed the project No Atelier. The second part of the Majak’s Capital project is formed by landscape shots of the areas under preparatory works for the construction of a new Volkswagen factory. The 6th part of the Wrzesnia Collection will be presented this Friday.
Katarzyna Majak – CAPITAL. THE WRZESNIA COLLECTION 2014
Opening of the exhibition @ Wrzesnia’s Main Square: June 12 at 5:00 PM. The exhibition will be open to the public until August 31, 2015.
Premiere of the photo book and meeting with the author @ the Wrzesnia Children Regional Museum (13 Wrzesnia Children St., Wrzesnia, Poland): June 12 at 5:45 PM.
“Leszek Górski (cd! #5) is fascinated with the world of technical and utilitarian human activities. He notices and appreciates its beauty: the colour, rhythm, repetitiveness of forms, configuration of light and shadow. What he photographs and the way he does it, is like a song glorifying achievements of human genius and organisational artistry of area that surrounds us” – that is how Wojciech Plewinski, senior of Polish photography, trained architect, sensitive to such aesthetics, writes about Górski’s photography. It is possible to find there traces of Bresson’s lightness, bravery, and pugnacity of Russian constructivists, Rodchenko. Maybe even affinity with the Düsseldorf School‘s struggle for cleanness of frame and reductionism of means of expression. But there is one totally individual feature, hard to miss: these photographs put us in a good mood. They talk to us directly: look how wonderful things we have created, let’s enjoy them. It is quite subversive information in our pessimistic and nervous times.
Formally speaking, it is typical documentary photography, always presenting some part of reality. However, Górski shows us this image hoping it will make the viewers feel, remember, and will never leave them cold. He hopes his work will be recognised, even unconsciously, and enriched with a quality resulting from the author’s creative input. At least such hope guides him in his work.
Leszek Górski (b. 1960) | based in Cracow (Poland) | graduated from the Cracow University of Technology | an entrepreneur | has taken pictures for 30 years | author of the exhibitions: Subversive Stories and Architectures (both in 2013) | mainly interested in architecture and the human in urban environment | looks at the world from a distance but with sympathy and interest | wants his work to be a source of positive emotions | his pictures affirm the world of progress and civilisation | member of the Association of Polish Artists Photographers.
Leszek Górski – SUBVERSIVE STORIES
B&B Gallery (12 May 1 St., Bielsko-Biala, Poland). Grand opening and artist’s meeting: June 12 at 6:00 PM. The exhibition will be open to the public until July 7, 2015.
The exhibition is organised under contra doc! patronage.
Imaginarium is a story about the inner world of blind and sight-impaired children. I asked them how they imagine they look like. In response I received remarkable self-portraits. They showed me things they are not able to see. This concept of imagination is a question of what it means to be blind. Maybe the only way to find the limit of visible is to go beyond it – into the invisible.
This series of diptychs shows children with impaired vision. I compare each portrait with drawing that shows the child’s self-portrait. Drawings were made on a special kind of paper designed for blind people. Pictures were taken in Poland at the Educational Centre for Blind and Visually Impaired in Laski (Poland).
doc! #32 (pp. 147-161)
Steve McCurry is one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than thirty years. As a young man, after several months of travel, 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. After weeks embedded with the Mujahideen, 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 over six continents and countless countries.
„In searching for a new photo I always look for fleeting, unguarded moments and attempt to capture the personal experiences that are indelibly etched on a face“ – says Steve McCurry. – „The portraits cover a wide range of ages from tiny infants to the very elderly, and demonstrate numerous expressions and a wealth of experiences. Each image reflects a sense of trust and openness towards the camera and, by association, to the viewer themselves. The pictures tell of a desire to make contact with one another during a split-second of their lives. Some of these faces are from places or situations that I do not want to remember, but all are faces that I shall never forget.”
The upcoming Steve McCurry exhibition in the Leica Gallery Warsaw will present iconic photos as well as unknown portraits of children, monks, coal miners, and travellers that McCurry has encountered on his journeys throughout Afghanistan, India, Indonesia, Burma, Pakistan, China, Tibet.
Each of his pictures stands on its own, with its own place and feeling. Each portrait speaks a thousand words about its subject and their world. McCurry illustrates areas which are affected by many hardships, poverty and harsh conditions but yet joyful, exuberant, beautiful, vividly coloured by natural dyes and spices. His images often dance on a knife-edge between sensuality and tragedy, sentiment and anguish.
Steve McCurry (b. 1950) | based in New York City (NY, USA) | graduated from the Pennsylvania State University (1974) | best known for the Afghan Girl photo shot in a refugee camp near Peshawar (Pakistan) | focuses on the human consequences of war | member of the Magnum Photos agency (since 1986) | recipient of numerous awards, including Robert Capa Gold Medal for Best Photographic Reporting from Abroad (1980), National Press Photographers Association’s Magazine Photographer of the Year (1984), Leica Hall of Fame Award (2011), World Press Photo (1984 & 1992) and Pictures of the Year International (1992, 1996, 1997, 1998 and 2000) | portrayed in a TV documentary The Face of the Human Condition by Denis Delestrac (2003) | his photographs have been published and exhibited around the world | author of several photo books, including The Unguarded Moment (2009), The Iconic Photographs (2011) and Untold: The Stories Behind the Photographs (2013), among others.
Steve McCurry – Unguarded Moments
Leica Gallery Warsaw (3 Mysia St., Warsaw, Poland). Grand opening: June 18 at 8:00 PM. The exhibition will be open to the public between June 19 and August 30, 2015.
The exhibition is organised under doc! photo magazine patronage.
Summer Cinema starts tomorrow! Four movies about photography presented in four Polish cities (Cracow, Katowice, Poznan and Warsaw) during four exiting night meetings. Summer Cinema is a part of WE ARE ALL PHOTOGRAPHERS – series of meetings which aim is to guide to the world of contemporary photography, a careful and critical look at the photography.
The first edition of Summer Cinema project will consists of the following movies:
Watermark (Canada, 2013 – directed by Jennifer Baichwal & Edward Burtynsky)
- Warsaw @ Defilad Square on June 2 at 9:30 PM
- Cracow @ Forum Przestrzenie on June 11 at 9:30 PM
- Poznan @ Brzeg Wschodni on June 25 at 9:30 PM
- Katowice @ Galop on July 30 at 9:30 PM
Get the Picture (Ireland, 2012 – directed by Cathy Pearson)
- Warsaw @ Defilad Square on July 6 at 9:30 PM
- Cracow @ Forum Przestrzenie on July 9 at 9:30 PM
- Katowice @ Galop on July 16 at 9:30 PM
- Poznan @ Brzeg Wschodni on July 23 at 9:30 PM
Dans un Ocean d’Images (Canada, 2013 – directed by by Helen Doyle)
- Warsaw @ Defilad Square on August 6 at 9:00 PM
- Cracow @ Forum Przestrzenie on August 13 at 9:00 PM
- Katowice @ Galop on August 20 at 9:00 PM
- Poznan @ Brzeg Wschodni on August 27 at 9:00 PM
A Film About With Anders Petersen (Sweden, 2006 – directed by JH Engström)
- Warsaw @ Defilad Square on September 3 at 8:30 PM
- Cracow @ Forum Przestrzenie on September 10 at 8:30 PM
- Katowice @ Galop on September 17 at 8:30 PM
- Poznan @ Brzeg Wschodni on September 24 at 8:30 PM
All movies will be presented in original or English language versions with Polish subtitles.
Summer Cinema is organised under doc! photo magazine patronage.