All posts filed under: Photojournalism

Mathias Depardon on hunger strike against detention by Turkish authorities

On 06 May Mathias Depardon was in good spirits – on assignment in South East Turkey for National Geographic, he updated his Facebook with a post reading “Diyarbakir I m in town. My boots are muddy and I m a bit smelly but can surely be of a good company tonight for a beer.” By 08 May his assignment had turned sour, with Turkish police arresting him in Hasankeyf, Batman Province, and detaining him in a police station for 30 hours. There the police are thought to have come across his images of members of the banned PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) via social media, leading to charges that he had created “propaganda for a terrorist organisation” – charges which Reporters Sans Frontiers’ Turkish representative Erol Önderoğlu has described as “absurd” and “designed solely to justify his arbitrary arrest after the event”. From the police station Depardon was taken to a detention centre operated by the National Department for Migration, an interior ministry offshoot, in the city of Gaziantep – and, despite an order for his deportation issued on 11 May, …

2017-05-25T10:00:29+00:00

Q&A: J A Mortram on his ten-year project Small Town Inertia

J A (or Jim) Mortram was born in 1971, and studied art in Norwich. In his third year of college he dropped out to become the primary carer for his mother, who has chronic epilepsy, in a small market town in Norfolk called Dereham. In 2006 he started shooting people in and around Dereham, focusing on those facing disadvantages and social exclusion, and went to create a blog called Small Town Inertia, featuring his images and their words. The blog was critically acclaimed early one, and in 2013 Mortram was one of BJP‘s Ones to Watch. Mortram has made publications of three of his stories with Cafe Royal Books, and is now finalising a photobook called Small Town Inertia, which will be published by  Bluecoat Press in June. BJP: When did you get into photography? J A Mortram: About seven or eight years ago, in the months before I started the Small Town Inertia blog. It both saved and completely transformed my life. After years of being a carer for my disabled mother, I’d become highly marginalised. Being a carer …

2017-05-25T10:42:29+00:00

Any answers: Hilary Roberts

I saw a rough-and-ready exhibition about events during the Prague Spring. It was 1977, and I was a student visiting the Soviet-controlled Czechoslovakian capital. The show was very basic in its curatorship and design; what we’d now call a pop-up. But it made me realise how photography can transcend language barriers. Photography has the ability to tell a story on multiple levels. The Prague exhibition complied with the state messages of the time, and yet, when you looked at the photographs, there was a subtext telling a very different story. The exhibition was about the reassertion of law and order. But it was also clearly an exploration of popular protest and a demand for democracy and freedom of expression. I joined the Imperial War Museum in 1980 as a junior curator. I’ve worked here ever since. I thought two years would do it, but then The Falklands conflict happened. At that point, the subject leapt off the pages of the history books and into the present day. The role of a photography curator was very …

2017-05-25T12:58:45+00:00

Obituary: Stanley Greene, photojournalist, 1949-2017

“You know how good a flower smells when you have smelled death,” Stanley Greene once told Clement Saccomani, the managing director of the Noor agency Greene had co-founded in 2007. A cornerstone of contemporary photojournalism and storytelling, Greene died this morning, facing his disease as he faced his life – fighting. Born in Brooklyn in 1949 to two actors, Stanley was a member of the Black Panthers and anti-Vietnam War activist as a teenager, and first got involved with art through painting. Turning to photography, he shot an epic project on San Francisco’s punk scene over the 1970s and 80s, naming it The Western Front. After meeting W. Eugene Smith, Greene turned to photojournalism, first working as a temporary staff photographer for the New York Newsday and then starting to photograph for magazines. In 1986 he moved to Paris and began covering world events. By chance, in 1989, he was in Berlin as the Wall fell. He shot an image titled Kisses to All depicting a tutu-clad girl with a champagne bottle, which came to symbolise the sense of liberation at that moment. In the early 1990s, Greene went to Southern Sudan to document …

2017-05-19T17:43:19+00:00

Reporters Without Borders calls for Mathias Depardon’s immediate release

Non-governmental organisation has called for French photographer Mathias Depardon’s immediate and unconditional release, describing his detention in Southeast Turkey since 8 May “completely unjustified”. Aged 30 and based in Istanbul, Depardon was arrested while doing a report on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers for National Geographic magazine.

2017-05-18T16:28:58+00:00

Mathias Depardon arrested in Turkey

French photographer Mathias Depardon has been arrested in South East Turkey, according to Erol Önderoğlu, the Turkish representative for the Reporters Without Borders NGO. Önderoğlu tweeted on 10 May that Depardon had been taken into custody after taking pictures of the ancient city of Hasankeyf and the Euphrates river; he added shortly afterwards that Depardon had been detained for 35 hours then transferred to the Immigration Administration [a migration centre], and had two cameras confiscated. On 10 May Önderoğlu tweeted with an update, stating that Depardon “faces ‘deport’ or ‘administrative detention’ at MigrationCenter (Lawyer)”. It is believed that Depardon was shooting on assignment for National Geographic – which was tagged in Önderoğlu’s first tweet. Önderoğlu was himself was placed under pre-trial arrest in June 2016, along with Ahmet Nesin and academic Sebnem Korur Fincanci, over charges of disseminating “terrorist propaganda”, after participating in a solidarity campaign supporting Ozgur Gundem, a pro-Kurdish publication, according to a report published on 21 June 2016 by The Guardian. The Stockholm Center for Freedom has detailed numerous other recent journalist arrests in …

2017-05-10T10:56:21+00:00

Photobook: Giancarlo Ceraudo’s Destino Final

“They were unconscious: we undressed them and when the captain of the flight gave us the order we opened the door and threw them out, naked, one by one,” says Adolfo Scilingo, a former Argentine naval officer. Over 5000 people were killed in this way by the Argentinian dictatorship during the so-called Dirty War of 1976 to 1983, in which it attempted to wipe out all opposition. Suspected dissidents and subversives were sedated and put on planes for so-called Death Flights; their journey ended when their unconscious bodies were thrown into the Rio de la Plata or the sea. Argentina’s desaparecidos – or “disappeared” – have stories that are almost beyond belief, and it’s only thanks to the testimony of survivors that justice has started to be done. Miriam Lewin is one such witness. A political activist who fought the dictatorship, she was just 19 when she was kidnapped and taken to a detention centre, where she stayed for one year. She was then transferred to the infamous ESMA facility – originally the Navy School of Mechanics (“Escuela …

2017-05-09T14:27:28+00:00

Report: Why Souvid Datta’s image theft is the least of the problem

It’s the scandal of the season – a young Anglo-Indian photographer Souvid Datta has been caught stealing other photographers’ images and claiming them, or elements of them, as his own. The story broke on 03 May, when PetaPixel published a story alleging Datta had taken a figure included in an image shot by Mary Ellen Mark on Falkland Road, Bombay 1978, and copy-pasted it to one of his own shots. Datta then renamed the person Asma and claimed Asma was a veteran sex worker friends with a 17 year old fellow sex worker, who he also named and who is also clearly identifiable in the photograph. The article included damning and pretty inarguable compare-and-contrast shots of the two images, and by 04 May, Time LightBox editor Olivier Laurent had managed to get an interview with Datta in which he confessed to this and other misdemeanours – such as taking images by Daniele Volpe, Hazel Thompson and Raul Irani and passing them off as his own, and cloning and restitching multiple components of his own images together. “I foolishly doctored images,” stated the …

2017-05-09T12:44:17+00:00

BJP Staff