April 29th, 2014

ICP Celebrates Infinity Award Winners (Recap and Video Links)

Last night the International Center of Photography honored photographers working in photojournalism, fine-art and fashion at the 30th annual Infinity Awards. The awards were inaugurated in 1985 as a way to recognize outstanding achievements by photographers working in various genres within the medium.

It was the first Infinity Awards ceremony for new ICP director Mark Lubell, who promised the crowd that the organization would remain at the “center of the conversation” about the medium. Perhaps as a way to illustrate that point, ICP arranged for a drone to photograph partygoers during the cocktail hour, then put those photographs on-screen at the beginning of the ceremony.

The Cornell Capa Lifetime Achievement Award was given to German-born photographer Jürgen Schadeberg, who as an expatriate in South Africa during Apartheid, made some of the most famous images of Nelson Mandela, and encouraged black South African journalists to pick up cameras and tell their stories.

James Welling was honored for his contribution to fine-art photography; Steven Klein for fashion; Stephanie Sinclair and Jessica Dimmock were honored for photojournalism; Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin were honored for their publication Holy Bible; and Samuel A. James received the Young Photographer award.

Sinclair and Dimmock received a standing ovation from the crowd for their work documenting the practice of child marriage and its effects on adolescent girls, their families and their communities. The project, “Too Young To Wed,” is a decade-long pursuit for Sinclair that has spawned a non-profit that she hopes will help young girls and communities do away with the practice of child marriage.

Samuel A. James, who in his young career has worked extensively in Nigeria documenting the impact of oil extraction on the culture—including photographing the illegal tapping of oil pipelines and makeshift refining operations by impoverished Nigerians—thanked the Nigerians who “gifted me these stories” during a short acceptance speech. James also dedicated the award to a friend who was killed in an explosion while attempting to refine black-market crude oil.

In accepting the Publication award for their book Holy Bible, for which they combined the King James Bible with images from the Archive of Modern Conflict, Broomberg and Chanarin called the book their “attempt to somehow illustrate this text,” and said they hoped it would be an invitation to others to make their own attempts. They also paid tribute to their publisher, Michael Mack for his production of the book, and to the Queen of England, who owns the copyright to the King James Bible.

In a slightly incongruous presentation, pop star Brooke Candy spoke about Steven Klein and introduced a high-octane video that reviewed much of Klein’s work. The fashion photographer briefly thanked the crowd after noting that, “photography pretty much saved my life.”

MediaStorm produced short documentary films about all of the recipients except Klein. Watch those films on the MediaStorm site here.

Related: Tour de Force: James Welling’s Artistic Versatility
Best Photo Books of 2013

February 24th, 2014

ICP Announces 2014 Infinity Award Winners

The International Center of Photography (ICP) just released their list of 2014 Infinity Award Winners.

ICP will give the 2014 Cornell Capa Lifetime Achievement Award to German-born South African photographer Jürgen Schadeberg, who is known for his depictions of Apartheid.

ICP will also recognize James Welling for his contribution to fine-art photography, and photojournalists Stephanie Sinclair and Jessica Dimmock will be recognized for their work on “Too Young to Wed,” a project about child marriage.

Other award winners include:

Fashion: Steven Klein
Publication: Holy Bible by Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin, MACK/AMC, 2013
Young Photographer: Samuel A. James

The award-winners will be honored in a ceremony at a gala event on Monday, April 28, 2014 in New York City.

The selection committee for this year’s awards included Sean Corcoran, ‎Curator of Prints and Photographs, Museum of the City of New York; Brett Rogers, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery, London; and Carol Squiers, Curator, ICP.

Related: Tour de Force: James Welling’s Artistic Versatility

February 1st, 2013

Sinclair, Dimmock Win World Press Multimedia Contest

Too-Young-to-Wed

A still from “Too Young to Wed,” by Stephanie Sinclair and Jessica Dimmock, both of VII Photo.

Stephanie Sinclair and Jessica Dimmock won first place in the Online Feature category of the 2013 World Press Photo Multimedia Contest for “Too Young to Wed.” The documentary multimedia project was produced for the Web and featured Sinclair’s images with motion work by Dimmock. It explores the cultural practice of allowing older men to marry girls under the age of 18 in countries like Ethiopia, Yemen and Afghanistan.

The World Press Photo organization announced its multimedia awards in three categories today in Amsterdam. All first-place winners for the 2013 Multimedia Contest will receive a cash award of 1,500 euros. Second and third place winners will receive a Golden Eye Award and a diploma.

The Too Young to Wed website is a partnership between the United Nations Population Fund and VII Photo. Other winners in the Online Feature category were Liz O. Baylen of the Los Angeles Times for “Dying for Relief: Bitter Pills,” which focuses on overcoming addiction to prescription pills; and Yang Enze of Southern Metropolis Daily for “Dreams on Freewheels” about seven members of China’s Disabled Track Cycling Team, who competed in the 2012 London Paralympic Games.

World Press Photo awarded Pep Bonet of Noor Images first place in the Online Short category for “Into the Shadows.” The online film focuses on the struggles of immigrants living in Johannesburg. Second place in this category went to Arkasha Stevenson of the Los Angeles Times for “Living with a Secret,” which explores gender identity in children. Jérôme Sessini of Magnum Photos won third place for his online short “Aleppo Battleground” about members of the Free Syria Army.

The third category of the World Press Photo Multimedia Contest was Interactive Documentary, which recognizes interactive online projects that feature a “combination of photography and/or film, with animation, graphics, illustrations, sound or text.” First place was awarded to Miquel Dewever-Plana and Isabelle Fougère for “Alma, a Tale of Violence” about gang violence in Guatemala. Jeremy Mendes and Leanne Allison won second place for “Bear 71” about a female grizzly bear; and Claire O’Neill, photo editor at National Public Radio (NPR) won third place for “Lost and Found: Discover a Black-and-White Era in Full Color” about a photo historian who found a collection of photos taken in the 1930s in the trash. An honorable mention in this category went to Jake Price for “UnknownSpring,” which chronicles a Japanese community recovering from the tsunami.

The jury members for this year’s World Press Photo Multimedia Contest were Keith W. Jenkins of NPR, photojournalists Samuel Bollendorff and Susan Meiselas, Kang Kyung-ran of Frontline News Service, writer and poet Patrick Mudekereza, Bjarke Myrthu of Storyplanet.com, Caspar Sonnen of IDFA DocLab and Alan Stoga of Zemi Communications.

This is the third year that World Press Photo, a non-profit which supports visual journalism through educational programs, grants and awards, has honored multimedia storytelling. Michiel Munneke, managing director of World Press Photo, noted that “with the multimedia competition we are trying to do justice to what we see happening in the field. Our ambition is to inspire photographers to move forward and explore new territories.”

To see a complete list of winners and to view the winning projects, visit www.worldpressphoto.org.

Related Articles:

Samuel Aranda Wins 2012 World Press Photo of the Year

World Press Photo Multimedia Winners Announced

September 27th, 2012

Video Pick: A Partnership to Fight the Stigma of Incarceration

During a panel discussion at ASMP’s “Sustainable Business Models: Issues & Trends Facing Visual Artists” symposium, Stephen Mayes, managing director of the VII Photo Agency warned photographers not to think of themselves strictly as service providers. He suggested looking not for clients, but for “partnerships.” He said VII has successfully formed several such partnerships, in which the entity paying for the photos isn’t necessarily the same company that’s using the photos. One such partnership is the VII Photo Agency’s recent work creating videos and photo essays for Think Outside the Cell, a non-profit organization that works with the incarcerated, formerly incarcerated and their families to help end the stigma of incarceration

The campaign was funded by the Ford Foundation, and VII acted as Think Outside the Cell’s “exclusive visual communications partner,” according to the press release from VII. The photographs and video that VII photographers created for the Think Outside the Cell web site show the ordinary lives of people who were formerly incarcerated in order to raise awareness about the stigma and challenges they face upon release from prison— problems that go far beyond discrimination when applying for jobs. The stories the photographers tell also explore “the local, state and federal laws that prevent formerly incarcerated persons from accessing the resources necessary to establish a stable and productive life.”

The first of the videos, ten minutes long, debuted on the Think Outside the Cell web site this week. It’s a collaboration between Ed Kashi, Jessica Dimmock, Ashley Gilbertson and Ron Haviv; the videos are edited by Francisco Fagan.

Here’s a short trailer:

The Prison Photography blog has begun a five-part series on the Think Outside the Cell campaign, and will be running weekly interviews with each of the photographers. Part One of the series was posted this week. In it, writer Pete Brook talks to Sheila Rule and Joseph Robinson, co-founders of Think Outside The Cell, and one of the subjects featured in the video. They explain how the organization is addressing the problems of the formerly incarcerated, how the campaign was planned, and why the partnership with VII was, in Rule’s words, “a natural fit.” Says Rule, “We are both driven by storytelling. Stories change hearts and minds.”

September 14th, 2011

PDN Video Pick: Fighting Malnutrition, at Home and Abroad


Jessica Dimmock and Antonin Kratochvil, photojournalists with the VII Photo Agency, created the video “Double Standard” as part of Starved for Attention, the multimedia campaign about malnutrition created by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). The video highlights the disparity between the US government’s approach to preventing malnutrition at home and the food aid it ships to developing countries.

Dimmock interviewed mothers in Johnstown, PA, who use Women and Infant Children (WIC) vouchers– not without difficulties– to purchase nutritious food for their growing children. In Uganda,  Kratochvil interviewed a doctor who has treated infants dying of diarrhea, pneumonia and other diseases resulting from malnutrition. She talks about the nutritional deficiencies of the corn-and-soy cereal that the US ships –at great cost– as part of its humanitarian food aid. Kratochvil also shows in expressive black-and-white photos the corn farms in the American heartland where the cereal product originates.

“Double Standard” is one of several videos being shown in a new public exhibition that Doctors Without Borders is staging in four US cities. Visitors can tour an MSF field hospital and get information about an MSF petition which urges donor nations to ensure their food aid meets certain nutritional standards. The videos can also be viewed on the Starved for Attention web site and here.

Related story:
Interactive Photo Display on Malnutrition: Coming to a City Near You