For five years the photographer Rob Hornstra and journalist Arnold van Bruggen travelled through the Caucasus and recorded the building of the most expensive winter Olympic Games to date. To put it better: they have recorded historical, social, cultural and political “behind-the-scenes” of the 2014 winter Olympic Games in Sochi – focusing on the regions of Sochi, Abhazia and Northern Caucasus
The article analyses the photographic oeuvre of Borut Krajnc as a result of talks with the author working with his extensive archive. Among Slovenian photographers, Borut Krajnc currently surely occupies the position of being one of the most prominent and experienced documentarians. He mostly works as a documentary photographer and photojournalist.
The article explores the symbolic status of the insurgent barricade and its curious visual marginalisation or absence in photographic representation of recent political and economic protests from Gezi Park to Maidan Nezalezhnosti. The insurgent barricade is a potent visual icon, a symbol of revolutionary tradition and a metonymy of a failing society.
The Shilo Group are three younger generation Ukrainian photographers (Vladyslav Krasnoshchok, Sergiy Lebedynskyy and Vadym Trykoz), which in its work deals with current and past social conditions of Ukraine. Their most prominent project, Euromaidan, 2014, received numerous awards and nominations, e.g. ranking among the top twenty photobooks of 2014, according to the Paris Photo and the Aperture Foundation.
Deceased gay activist and teacher David Kato stated in an interview in 2011 that there were two ways to survive being gay in Uganda: to either hide and seek darkness, or proudly step forward, out of the darkness. Photographer Tadej Žnidarčič has efficiently used this very contrast in his project We are here, we are gay and we are Ugandans.
Pointing the camera at the Israeli Separation Barrier-Wall involves a fundamental paradox: no matter how critical we are of its construction, once we choose to photograph it, we are colluding with its construction and preservation. Photography is related directly to proving that something exists and to memorializing the presence of places that have been built or destroyed.
Sure, images that are meant to make an argument about social relations can ‘work’. But the documentary that has so far been granted cultural legitimacy has no such argument to make. Its arguments have been twisted into generalizations about the condition of ‘man’, which is by definition not susceptible to change through struggle.
So why continue to defend documentary? The short answer is, because we need it, and because it likely will continue, with or without art world theorizing. As the division widens between rich and poor in the United States and elsewhere, there is less and less serious analysis of the lives of those on the wrong side of that great divide.
The opus of the French photographer Grégoire Eloy is marked by a distinctly aesthetic approach to documenting the world. This quality of his photographic style is evident both in his subtly critical series related to the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and in projects that are of a completely different nature.