LightBox | Time
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It’s been years since the book, War is Personal, hit shelves in September 2010, and even longer since Richards completed the project. In honor of that anniversary, LightBox caught up with Richards to discuss the way that photographs can follow a photographer.With War is Personal, Richards has found that it’s not just the images that draw him back in. “When you do a project like this, people keep occasionally popping back into your life,” he says.
Their conversation took place in New York City in January, the day after the opening for Richards’s exhibition “War is Personal” at 401 Projects.
The 5th annual Oslo Photo Festival, which took place from March 16 to 20 in Norway’s capital, hosted talks by photojournalists and documentary photographers Carolyn Drake, Stephanie Sinclair, Pieter Ten Hoopen, Thomas Lekfeldt, Andrea Star Reese, Justyna Mielnikiewicz and Eugene Richards. Speakers offered insights into how they win the trust of subjects, what it takes to develop a strong personal project, and advice on surviving under difficult conditions and in an increasingly demanding profession.
As part of CPN's educational interviews Eugene Richards, the celebrated American photographer and writer, gives a fascinating insight into his famously hard-hitting and compassionate documentary work. In this exclusive video interview he reveals how he thinks photojournalism has changed in recent years, the ways in which his work has sometimes had unintended consequences, and the challenges photojournalists now face in the ever-changing media landscape.
On 1 May, during the Awards Days weekend celebration, US photographer Eugene Richards delivered the World Press Photo Sem Press Lecture to a full house at Felix Meritis. In the 75-minute lecture titled 'Books', Richards discussed his career in photography and the reason he publishes much of his work in books. He put an emphasis on two of his recent works The Blue Room and War is Personal.
for a magazine such as Time, which I still believe has journalistic importance and merit, this photo essay of illustrations denigrating Obama and the Nobel Peace Prize in such a ham-handed and childish and poorly-executed way…I’m at a loss for words
Behind the Scenes: Silence at a Festival – Lens Blog – NYTimes.com:
Most shows were the result of the dedication of individual photographers to the telling of a single story. Several of the most talked-about exhibits were by photographers whose projects were driven solely by passion, often with no assignments to sustain them.
Among the highlights were Eugene Richards’s powerful photographs of the effect of the Iraq war on Americans, Brenda Ann Kenneally’s exceptional images of upstate girls in her hometown of Troy, N.Y., and revealing photographs of the Afghan people by Zalmaï Ahad, known professionally as Zalmaï.
Documentary photographer Eugene Richards – who famously quit Magnum twice – has now left the VII Photo Agency. Speaking to PDN today, he said he left about a week ago and the choice was “personal preference,” motivated by the agency “going in a different direction.” He said he wishes VII well. “Sometimes you don’t fit,” he added. Richards said he has no plans to join another agency. Richards was voted into VII in 2006.
Check it out here.
Documentary photojournalist Eugene Richards has a long career of producing powerful projects on social issues such as drug abuse, mental illness and aging. He is now working on a project on the impact of the Iraq war titled “War is Personal.” Helped by a grant from National Geographic Magazine, he is traveling around the U.S. to work on a series of stories mainly about veterans and their families. PDN recently sat down with Richards at his home in Brooklyn, N.Y., to talk about the project.
Check it out here.
From Scott Anderson (photos by Eugene Richards/VII), New York Times Magazine:
Norris, too, had come to understand that his presence was not appreciated, or worse. His officers, he told me, “were always drumming into us: ‘Hearts-and-minds, hearts-and-minds. We’ve got to win these people over.”‘ He gave a laugh. “These people just wanted us dead.”
Few human beings are subject to as much misunderstanding, cruelty, and neglect as the mentally ill and mentally retarded. People with mental disabilities are often abandoned or hidden away in public institutions, which are grossly overcrowded and unsanitary, and which offer little in the way of medical care or training. The developmentally disabled are mixed with the mentally ill, young with the old, unhealthy with the healthy. Deprived of medical and dental care, proper nutrition, education, and counseling, the mentally disabled have little chance of living productively and safely within these institutions, and little opportunity of ever leaving.
Working as a volunteer for a human rights organization I traveled to Asuncion, Paraguay, with the intention of gaining entry into the Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, the country’s single public psychiatric facility. This frighteningly substandard institution warehouses 460 patients, a great many of them ‘abandonados,’ people placed there because they have absolutely nowhere else to go. I photographed patients living out their lives in filthy dormitories, sleeping on bare mattresses, utilizing open, dirty toilets, bathing in ice-cold water. Among the patients being supervised by what can only be called a sub-custodial level of staff were two teenaged boys who’d been held for six years in tiny, unlit, cage-like cells. This 12-image selection, part of a personal, long-term project, received first place in the Issue Reporting Picture Story category at this year’s POYi.
From Journal of a Photographer:
“The work of Eugene Richards is a cornerstone of contemporary documentary photography and filmmaking. All of us at VII welcome Eugene and look forward to his comradeship and creative spirit.”, says James Nachtwey, president of VII. “I am very pleased to be a part of this very creative group of people,” says Eugene Richards.