Focus on South Africa: Tshepiso Mazibuko - LENSCRATCH

In this second iteration of “Focus on South Africa” I wanted to include features on photography platforms, collectives, and teaching organizations in addition to artist profiles. In South Africa many photographers do not begin or advance their careers in

Tshepiso Mazibuko’s empathetic series “Ho tshepa ntshepedi ya bontshepe” puts forward a voice that is often underrepresented in the photographic community: a young black woman reflecting on her community, its promise, and the reality of the crippling economic situation for young people of color in South Africa. Mazibuko’s series explores the experience of “Born Frees” in her township of Thokoza and the structural inequities that continue to limit a generation that grew up with the promise of equal opportunity. The name “Born Frees” refers to those born after 1994. This generation never experienced life under the confines of apartheid, but has grown up impacted by situations that limit social and economic mobility.

Lacey Terrell: The Passing Ring - LENSCRATCH

I think about the notion of the Circus’ place on the fringe of culture, while also being at its historical core.  The performers passing through ‘the backdoor’ in and out of the ring, taps into notions of performing identities and is one of my favorite el

For the past 25 years, photographer Lacey Terrell has had a ring side seat at the Big Top, in particular, the Culpepper & Merriweather Great Combined Circus. This year will be her last foray to follow and document the circus in order to complete her long term project, The Passing Ring, a project that not only reflects an extensive portrait of one of the last nomadic tribes in America, but also echoes the evolution of taking pictures.  The series includes images made with a Hasselblad, Holga, Mamiya 645, Pentax 6×7, Nikon 35mm film, Leica film point and shoot, and a Nikon Digital. Photographed through much of California, Montana, Iowa, Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Minnesota, Arizona, Nebraska, Washington, Idaho and Kansas, Terrell has created a massive archive of this very vulnerable, slice of Americana. “I have seen the Big Top both packed and almost empty, looking brand new and tattered and patched.” Her visits have ranged from a few days to 5 weeks at a time, always depending on where they were, and how much time and money she had.  “Typically I would drive my car and stay either in a tent on the lot (known to some as the Little Top) or in the car, and occasionally at a motel nearby. Many of the towns don’t have motels, or don’t have motels that I would feel safe in by myself, so I prefer to stay on the lot. When I was on the road for 5 weeks, through Texas and the Southwest, I stayed in the home of one of the women on the show, and then would drive the then owner and founder of the Circus, Red Johnson’s, pick-up truck and trailer each day to the next town.  More recently, I have flown to locations and rented cars large enough to sleep in while on the road.  I still dream of getting myself a small trailer and traveling a full season- that would be ideal for finishing up the project… but I would need some serious funding!”

Islands of Milk and Honey, Bingo, Blood, and Protest

The exhibition entitled “Island Life” is a collection of photographs by some of Britain’s great post-war photographers. Does it make sense? Does it have to?

At Bristol Photo Festival, the exhibition entitled “Island Life” is a collection of photographs by some of Britain’s great post-war photographers. Does it make sense? Does it have to?

Opinion | Don’t Turn Away From These Images and These Crimes

Ethnic cleansing in Ethiopia began with murder, rape and pillage, and now moves to mass starvation.

These photos were taken by Lynsey Addario, a conflict photographer and old friend who happened to be in Ethiopia to shoot photos for National Geographic, a visit approved long before the latest attacks. She interviewed nine women who had been raped as part of the ethnic cleansing.

The Month New York Woke Up

May 2021 was the turning point, and we chronicled it, moment by moment, through the eyes of 15 photographers 25 and under.

During the pandemic, one of New York City’s greatest qualities — its delirious density — became a liability. New Yorkers had to adjust to a strange new reality, in which avoiding one another was the safe and responsible choice. But last month, with the vaccination rate soaring and hospitalizations plummeting, the lockdown mind-set evaporated, and the city surged back to life. The New York Times Magazine documented this reawakening through the eyes of 15 photographers, all of them age 25 or younger. For all 31 days of May, they fanned out around the city to capture the hope and excitement, the release of pent-up social energy — but also the anxiety and uncertainty about what might happen next.