After controversy on social media surrounding Newsha Tavakolian’s photographs of East Congo, Médecins Sans Frontières announces internal review
The celebrated Iranian photographer Newsha Tavakolian has defended herself against accusations of unethical practice after publishing a series of identifiable images of African teenage rape survivors made while on assignment for the international humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).
This week on Photojournalism Now: Friday Round Up – the 10th annual Women’s show at Magnet Galleries, Melbourne, plus a review of Dr. Lauren Walsh’s exceptional book, Conversation…
For those of us who work in journalism the myth of the cavalier photojournalist who rushes toward conflict with zeal is well established. Robert Capa’s famous comment about photographers needing to get close to the action in order to capture the best picture is part of industry folklore. Don McCullin has spoken about the adrenalin rush of going to war, likening it to drug addiction. Tim Page’s antics during the Vietnam War have been immortalised in pop culture, Dennis Hopper’s character in the movie Apocalypse Now modelled on the British photographer. Yet while there are those who are lauded as celebrities, the vast majority of conflict photojournalists work in the background, committing themselves to covering some of the world’s darkest moments, to bearing witness to history, largely invisible to the outside world. Glory and money do not motivate them. In fact, these days it is more difficult to make ends meet than ever before. So what drives an individual to the frontline or to document the depths of human misery?
Iranian photographer Newsha Tavakolian will receive the 2015 Principal Prince Claus Award, a 100,000 Euro prize. She has pledged nearly half to charity.
“Unfortunately it is hard for me to enjoy this prize as much as I would like to, seeing the region where I work and live in flames and tens of thousands seeking refuge in faraway lands,” the photographer said on her Facebook page, after the award was announced.
From film-inspired Max Pinckers to war reporter Lorenzo Meloni, from Newsha Tavakolian’s insider’s view to the conceptual work of Richard Moose, from the lyrical Carolyn Drake to the classic approach of Matt Black, the six Magnum nominees for 2015 cover the full range of current documentary trends
Michael Christopher Brown has been made an Associate Member
Carolyn Drake has been made a Magnum Nominee
Matt Black has been made a Magnum Nominee
Newsha Tavakolian has been made a Magnum Nominee
Max Pinckers has been made a Magnum Nominee
Richard Mosse has been made a Magnum Nominee
Lorenzo Meloni has been made a Magnum Nominee
Today I am announcing that due to irreconcilable differences over the presentation of my work, I am returning the cash award and stepping down as the winner of the Carmignac Gestion Award for photojournalism 2014, canceling all my cooperation with this foundation and its patron, the French investment banker Edouard Carmignac.
Newsha Tavakolian returned a 50,000-euro prize rather than see her work about contemporary Iran be controlled — distorted, she says — by the financier whose foundation selected her.
“I had to make a choice between my artistic freedom and my dignity, or the glory of something that is not real or not mine when it comes to what kind of book do I have,” Ms. Tavakolian said in a phone interview from Tehran. “This is a universal subject, not just about Iran. It is a subject all photographers are facing, but they do not talk about it. This is the only thing I have. It’s my vision, my artistic freedom.”
LightBox presents our monthly round-up of the best books, exhibitions and ways to experience photography beyond the web—from Carrie Levy’s exhibition in North Carolina and Gabriel Orozco’s latest show in Edinburgh, to Newsha Tavakolian in Los Angeles and England based Trolley Books’ look back at their first ten years.
“I used to think that photographers should travel to wars and earthquakes to capture suffering, but its much harder to portray the atmosphere of those suffering in their normal lives,” she says. “When my heart hurts for someone, even my sister or neighbor, I want to tell their story.”
The photographers interviewed include photojournalists such as Ed Kashi of the VII Agency and Peter Van Agtmael of Magnum, fashion photographer Peter Stigter, Iranian photographer Newsha Tavakolian, and others
On Assignment: Covering Tehran – Lens Blog
On Assignment: Covering Tehran – Lens Blog – NYTimes.com:
Newsha Tavakolian, a 28-year-old photographer who was born and raised in Tehran, has been covering Iran for Polaris Images since 2001 and has also worked as a freelancer for The Times since 2004.
New Group Unites Six Women Photojournalists
With the guidance of photographer Gary Knight of the VII agency, the six women have formed a new group called EVE Photographers to create and promote social documentary photojournalism. They will collaborate on projects and post their best work on a group web site.
The photographers are Marizilda Cruppe (in Brazil), Agnès Dherbeys (Thailand), Bénédicte Kurzen (South Africa), Justyna Mielnikiewicz (Georgia), Lourdes Segade (Spain) and Newsha Tavakolian (Iran).