Posts tagged: documentary photography

The Bewitching Goddesses and Green Men of Glastonbury



Photographer Dave Watts weaves in and out of the goddesses and green men, looking for portrait subjects— just as he did the year before.

Haunting Photos Show Chinese Villages on the Edge of Extinction



It was in 1998 that photographer Cui Maoyuan first visited Yuxian in Hebei Province, and it was during that first visit that he became enamored by the ancient buildings left behind by the Qing Dynasty. “I was born in a village in northern China,” says Maoyuan, “and my childhood memories are filled with ancient houses, temples, and theaters. But with the continuous development of society, all this has virtually disappeared.”

A Look at the Lives of Transgender Women in Indonesia

A young transgender puts make up on in his bedroom at Mami Joyce's house.

A young transgender woman puts make up on in her bedroom at Mami Joyce’s house.

Mami Joyce takes a cigarette break halfway through the make up process.

Mami Joyce takes a cigarette break halfway through the make up process.

In the heart of Jakarta’s bustling business district, says Italian-born photographer Giorgio Taraschi, Mami Joyce and her girls make their home. Taking in those as young as eighteen, the human rights activist has built a safe haven for transgender women—or “waria,” as they are often called in Indonesia—to call their own.

Secrets from the Isolated Territory of Susta

Collecting firewood. 2014

A woman collecting firewood for fuel.

Disputed land. 2014

“I hadn’t seen any form of images of the land or the people,” says Kathmandu-based photographer Prasiit Sthapit of what motivated him to visit Susta. Though its name flickered in and out of the newspapers—the territory is contested, claimed on one hand by Nepal and on the other by India—he could find very little about the isolated and mysterious area.

Intimate and defiant portraits of ‘GIRLS’ in present-day China (NSFW)



Described as one of the “rising stars of Chinese photography” by Ai Wewei in 2012, Beijing-based Luo Yang is gaining international recognition for her candid photographs of women in contemporary China. GIRLS began in 2007 as a deeply personal series, for in her subjects, Luo observed emotions and questions very similar to her own. The intimate photographs that constitute GIRLS alternate between carefully staged portraits depicting an emerging Chinese subculture that defies our expectations, and snapshots that favour a raw, blurred aesthetic. The photographer simultaneously manages to convey the girls’ defiance and ultra-cool composure, alongside their vulnerability, shyness and insecurities. Luo elaborates: “I can’t say that they represent a whole new generation of women in China, but they are absolutely a group of women who represent independence and freedom”.

Confessions from a Wild West Ghost Town (Sponsored)

Bodie, California, USA. Old haunted gold rush ghost town.

View of Bodie © Julien McRoberts / Offset

Bodie, California, USA. Old haunted gold rush ghost town.

Old car © Julien McRoberts / Offset

When New York City-based photographer and Offset artist Julien McRoberts drove around the bend and into Bodie, a ghost town in Northern California, the sight stopped her in her tracks: “I had to get my jaw off of the ground.” Before her eyes rose the remains of the Wild West, but unlike so many towns from the gold rush era, this one was preserved, trapped in the 19th century.

91-Year-Old Woman Embraces Life in Profound and Playful Images



In 2014, Canadian Italian artist Tony Luciani’s mother, then ninety-one years old, was no longer able to look after herself. As a painter working from his home studio, he felt it was best she stayed with him. “Mom doesn’t cook or clean anymore, so I’m the full-time caregiver” explains Tony, who began to include his mother in his art in order to help her feel more “productive”. With time, her role in the mother and son collaboration was a rejuvenating experience, “I noticed how alive she felt by participating; her youthfulness and eccentricity started to show through”. 

Tragedy and Poetry in the World of Paris’s ‘Crisis Generation’ (NSFW)

4 Dans la chambre de Maxime, 2014

Dans la chambre de Maxime, 2014

97 Dexter en cendres, 2010

Dexter en cendres, 2010

“We want to be a lost cause,” explains French photographer Hannibal Volkoff of the generation pictured in his first book Nous naissons de partout, which translates roughly in English to mean We are born all over. Beginning in the late aughts, the artist—himself a young man— has chronicled the ecstatic adventures of adolescents and emerging adults as they toss aside the conventions, rules, and securities of their parents’ generation.

Intimacy and Youth Captured Beautifully in the Blue Ridge Mountains



Alec Castillo began making photographs here – nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, the peaks often appearing in his grainy, black and white photographs. This was a time that Castillo termed as a ‘weird transitional phase’ of making new friends and rummaging about for an identity that fit. This is when he looked through the viewfinder to reflect, and inherently construct an identity. He introduces us to individuals – new friends among old ones – in a manner that moves beyond portraiture, traversing personal identity in the larger context of social groups.

A Rare Glimpse Inside Cuba’s Tenement Houses



New York-based Italian photographer Carolina Sandretto first travelled to Cuba in 2011; the country fascinated Carolina, as did the “time bubble which entraps it” and the strangely familiar culture she encountered there. The photographer started shooting Vivir Con in 2013, a project which stemmed from a personal exigency to describe what it means to live in Cuba, both in cultural and geographical terms. Due to a lack of means and permits to build new homes, the majority of the Cuban population live in “solars”: a solar is a building that was originally designed to be lived in by only one family, but has been transformed into a multi-family “coop” due to the increase in population and lack of space. Carolina elaborates: “One family often resides in one small room where all family members eat and sleep, from the grandparents to the nephews”. Vivir Con gives us a glimpse into what family life is like in a small space in a tropical country, while examining the tensions between neighboring families who are forced to co-exist.

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