FullBleed hear from photographers Gabriele Galimberti and Paolo Woods about the challenges of photographing different tax havens around the world.
In the next installment of the FullBleed series, photographers Gabriele Galimberti and Paolo Woods take us on a journey through the tax havens they explored for their award winning project The Heavens. The short documentary sheds light on the creation of this photoessay, shot over two years, for which the duo travelled across the globe, driven by a desire to learn more about the phenomenon of the tax haven and shed light on a world veiled in secrecy.
First meeting at photography school over seventeen years ago, Woods and Galimberti have become acclaimed documentary photographers in their own rights. Committed to telling the stories of people around the world, through portraits and text, Galimberti has dedicated his career to working on long-form documentary projects, most famously Switzerland Versus The World. Represented by INSTITUTE, Woods too works on long-term projects that blend photography with investigative journalism, winning a World Press Photo for his documentary work in Iraq.
Award-winning filmmaker and director Charlie Russell and FullBleed founder Jude Edginton, present a captivating documentation of Galimberti and Wood’s unrelenting quest to understand and reveal the secretive world of tax evasion.
“Paolo and Gabriele were extraordinarily kind in opening up their lives and their work to me, inviting me to Italy so that I could gain a real understanding of their project and their working relationship. It was a huge pleasure getting to know these two leading contemporary photographers” says Russell.
After realising how little they knew about a world so central to the contemporary financial system, for this project Woods and Galimberti decided to join forces and work together on investigating tax havens through creating a visual documentation of them. Aside from gaining access to these places, finding ways to represent them presented another challenge.
“The more we read about tax havens, the more we realised there wasn’t much to photograph,” recounts Woods. “Access was terribly difficult, so often we got negative answers or none at all. It’s frustrating at first but it’s a good challenge.”
Nevertheless the duo were persistent in their mission, succeeding at infiltrating offshore centres that epitomise the issues of tax avoidance and extreme wealth, which are negatively impacting both the global economy and our everyday lives.
Throughout the documentary, Russell and Edginton capture Galimberti and Wood’s unyielding determination, painting a portrait of two photographers committed to investigating this issue in order to educate both themselves and their viewers.
To learn more about the photographers, their process and The Heavens project, watch the complete documentary on FullBleed.TV. For more FullBleed films, sign up to FullBleed’s channel and keep an eye on BJP’s Twitter and Facebook for new releases.