jueves, 9 de marzo de 2017

XV CÓRDOBA BIENNIAL OF PHOTOGRAPHY: LAUNCHING CEREMONY OF A WORLD-CLASS CULTURAL EVENT IN 2017

SPANISH
                         Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

                                    Photo: Antonio Jesús González

                                   Photo: Antonio Jesús González

Today March 9, 2017 at 10:00 h the presentation act of the XV Córdoba Biennal of Photography has been held at the Orive Palace (site of the Culture Delegation of Córdoba Town Hall), with the attendance of David Luque ( Culture and Heritage Deputy Mayor of Córdoba Town Hall), Juan Carlos Limia (General Coordinator of the Biennal), Oscar Fernández (Comissar of the Official Section) and José Gálvez (President of AFOCO).

The XV Córdoba Biennal of Photography will be celebrated between March 23 and May 21, 2017, and its contents (both from the viewpoint of the first-class exhibitions which will be shown to the visitors and the presence of recognized photographers and experts in the history of photography featuring extensive professional trajectory and experience who will impart a wide range of lectures, round table conferences, workshops, etc, undoubtedly make up a world-class event, with a tiptop programme in which highlight:

OFFICIAL SECTION


- The Mexican Suitcase:

The most important photographic exhibition displayed in the world hitherto throughout XXI Century along with Genesis by Sebastiao Salgado.

A real trove of invaluable photographic and historical images: 4,500 original negatives of pictures made by Robert Capa, Gerda Taro and David Seymour Chim during the Spanish Civil War which were found intact in México in 1995 and were recovered by the ICP of New York in December of 2007.



They are 24 x 36 mm format negatives of panchromatic black and white film, mostly nitrate ones, featuring a Weston 32 nominal sensitivity (roughly equivalent to ISO 40), whose smell is truly indescribable, as well as providing a unique and distinctive vintage image aesthetics (thanks to their very high content in silver) to the pictures, which in spite of having beeen taken with b & w chemical emultions sporting abundant presence of grain, it is offset by the remarkable acutance begotten by the Agfa Rodinal and other developers used by Csiki Weisz (darkroom man of Capa, Chim and Taro) to enhance the visual feeling of sharpness in the observer, which is preserved even in king size enlargements, a substantial viewing and historical treat for any lover of classic black and white photography, vital epicenter of the halcyon days of photojournalism throughout thirties, forties and fifties.

The far-flung communications network of high speed AVE trains, both inside Andalusia and the rest of the Spanish geography, generates broad possibilities for every lover of the historical war photojournalism, in black and white and colour alike, wishing to go to Córdoba to watch live (in copies on top-notch photographic quality paper, frequently in large sizes, an unforgettable experience, utterly different to seeing the pictures in internet) extraordinary images which greatly defined the last century and constitute the core of this really world-class XV Photography Biennal of Córdoba.


Managing to bring to Córdoba this fabulous exhibition that has visited the most important cities on earth is an amazing success for the town beside the Guadalquivir river banks, which is currently populated by around 328,000 inhabitants, but is very proud of its lavish and exceedingly interesting photographic history (to such an extent that such as has was discovered by Antonio Jesús González, only nine months after the introduction of his invention in Paris in 1839, there was already a daguerrotype photographer getting pictures in Córdoba) embodied by great photographers like Rafael Garzón Rodríguez, José García Córdoba, Emilio Godes Hurtado, Montilla, Manuel Alcalá, J. Albors, Tomás Molina, José García Córdoba, Ricardo, Tejada, Francisco Linares, Framar, Ladislao Rodríguez Benítez, Juan Vacas, José Gálvez, Ladislao Rodríguez Galán, Francisco Sánchez Moreno and many others.

Already during nineties, the Posada del Potro in Córdoba held fabulous photographic exhibitions which turned it then into the third most important room in Europe regarding this activity, without forgetting the progressive consolidation of both the Mezquita Awards ( which enjoy a well deserved reputation) and the Photography Biennal of Córdoba in its successive editions, as well as getting a historical achievement: Córdoba has been until now the only city in Spain which has been bestowed the National Prize of Photography in its four categories: 1992 (AFOCO), 1993 (Town Hall), 1998 (Diafragma Foto Magazine) and 2006 (photographer José Gálvez).

But all records have been broken in this XV Photography Biennal of Córdoba.
                                  © Susan Meiselas / Magnum Agency

- Nicaragua: 

The great reportage made by Susan Meiselas (a Magnum Agency photographer since 1980, Robert Capa Gold Medal in 1979, MacArthur Fellow in 1992, Centenary Medal and Honorary Member of the Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain in 2006) between June of 1978 and July of 1979, during the Sandinist Front of National Liberation (FSLN) vs Anastasio Somoza dictator troops.

They´re stunning images, being particularly prominent the one in which appears the guerrilla man Pablo "Bareta" Arauz about to thrown a Molotov cocktail made with a Pepsi-Cola bottle against one of the last strongholds of the National Guard in July of 1979.

It is a highly powerful and meaningful graphic document masterfully summarizing the continuous restlessness, rage and danger inherent to any war.


- Graphic History of The Civil War in Córdoba:

An extraordinary assortment of images of the Spanish Civil War, many of them unknown till now.

Production of its own gathered by the Córdoba Photography 15th Biennal, with pictures taken by both contenders and fostereed by the presence of a number of documents, newpapers and original vintage magazines of the time.

Commissared by Juan Manuel Fernández Delgado, it´s nowadays one of the most important collections in the world regarding the conflict which ravaged Spain between 1936-1939 and enabling to put any beholder into context to be able to grasp how the war was lived in the city of Córdoba and the whole province.


- Images of the World and Epitaphs of War: 

It´s a very comprehensive and interesting exhibition produced by the 15th Photography Biennal of Cordoba in collaboration with the Goethe Institute and coming from the collection of Michael Zapke, a recognized German photographer based in Seville since 1980, boasting a great experience in publicity photography, architecture photography (he has published images within this genre in Taschen and Könemann books) and landscapes, with a well-grounded optical background in Munich where he became an optician in mid sixties, having published some books about Spain, Andalusia and Seville since 1999 and pictures in El País/Aguilar, Planeta Agostini, RACE, Nuevo Estilo, Elle, Enedesa Foundation of Seville, GEO, The Ages of Man Foundation, Horology Museum in Jerez de la Frontera, Archaeological Museum of Alicante and many others, including commendable photo essays on the sublime Andalusian patios and sceneries.

He´s also a great collector of cameras and lenses in different formats and periods (of which his exhibition will display a vast array of models used throughout the Spanish Civil War) and an international level expert on the use of panoramic cameras, 360º photography and influence of technology on the photographic discourse.
Nick Ut, an Associated Press photographer, author of the two pictures appearing on the double page of the June 23, 1972 number of Life magazine ( and which were made two weeks before, on June 8, 1972, in the outskirts of the Vietnamese village of Trang Bang. The one on the right is the mythical image of the 9 year old girl Phan Thi Kim Phúc running scared with her body burnt by the bombs of napalm and white phosphorus dropped during the bombing of the hamlet by the South Vietnamese aviation against the Vietcong forces that had occupied the settlement), which belongs to Michael Zapke´s worthy collection.


                                     © Carole Alfarah

- Wa Habibi:

An exhibition of pictures made by the Syrian photojournalist Carole Alfarah between 2012 and 2014 during the War in Syria.

They are images oozing remarkable expressive strength, depicting feelings, experiencies and remembrances live by normal persons whose lives have been broken by that conflict: the widows, the ill, the dead, the orphans, the poor, etc, with the keynotes of photography and memory as a binding amalgam in search of the recollection of the existence and life occurrences endured by human beings under the most appalling conditions and who have daily fought for their survival, etc.

And to attain it, Carole Alfarah does use her photographic camera as a tool with power and ability to capture that myriad of emotions, perceptions, feelings, longing for the loved ones killed in the war, fear of the future, alienation, forced migration, destroyed entire quarters, mothers striving after getting her children ahead in environments of absolute misery, tenderness in glances in the midst of adversity, the ubiquitous smell of death, etc.

                                                   © Rafael Alcaide

Fronteras:

An exhibition of pictures created by Rafael Alcaice (an EFE Agency photographer who previously worked in Diario de Córdoba and ABC Córdoba).

He is a highly versatile professional whose photojournalism reportages and fashion assignments (one of his photographs was chosen as image of the 2016 edition of Madrid Fashion) have been published by a slew of both national and international newspapers and magazines.

He is likewise an expert on Full HD and 4K videography and the recording of images with drones, a sphere in which he was one of the pioneers in Spain.

Fronteras is a touching visual story about the largest forced exodus of the XXI Century, whose main characters have been the refugees coming from Syria, Irak and Afghanistan, with pictures taken by Rafael Alcaide in 2015 while marching with hundreds of the aforementioned countries in full ordeal walking from the Serbo-Hungarian border, subsequently crossing through Croatia or Slovenia, and whose goal was to reach Austria.

They are heartrending images of persons bound to leave their previous lives and dwellings behind by war and now face an uncertain future, whis is accurately and sensitively depicted by the photographer by means of graphic documents in which you can see frightened refugee children whose eyes mirror the horror of the war they have lived on the spot and who travel inside overcrowded buses and trains in a strenuous journey across European countries in deplorable hygienic conditions, the hardships pervading the arrival at all and each one of the refugee camps, crammed with men, women and children fleeing the wars in the Near East, with steady scenes of club blows and deportations by Hungarian and Slovenian riot policemen, hypothermias, exhaustion, lack of food and water, etc.

PHOTOGRAPHERS IN WARS ROUND TABLE, CONTEMPORARY PHOTOJOURNALISM IN CONFLICT AREAS

Moderated by Pablo Juliá, former director of the Andalusian Center of Photography, it is another of the cornerstones of this historical 15th Photography Biennal of Córdoba which will be celebrated from March 23, 2017, because it will be honored by the presence of three internationally renowned Spanish photographers:


- Emilio Morenatti: Presently one of the best photojournalists of wars and human beings in the world, featuring an experience of more than 28 years in which he´s covered conflicts in a number of countries, particularly in Middle East, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He is a London University of Art Master in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography and a photographer for Associated Press since March 2004 (after his stage as a photojopurnalist for Agencia EFE since 1992), has been chosen Best Photojournalist of the Year PoYI (Pictures of the Year International) by the Missouri (United States) School of Journalism in 2009 and by the NPPA (National Press Photographers Association) of United States in 2010, having alikewise been awarded with the first prize Fotopres 2009 bestowed by the Obra Social La Caixa (a year in which he was runner-up of the Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the War in Afghanistan), The Godó Prize of Photojournalism 2009, The Golden Medal of the National Headliner Awards of the Atlantic City Press Club in 2010, the Lucas Dolega First Photo Award 2012 at the Hotel Ville de Paris, the Ortega y Gasset Prize, the Junta de Andalucía Golden Medal for Work Merit in 2010 and the World Press Photo 2013.

The August 11th, 2009 meant a turning point in his life when he was seriously wounded as a consequence of the explosion of a huge bomb when the eight wheeled U.S Army Stryker armoured vehicle of personnel transport (featuring thermal vision and Caterpillar 3126 diesel engine) inside which he was embedded (covering the war in the desert of Southern Afghanistan, in Kandahar Province) was passing by, and its 14.5 mm protection and the strengthening of the lower area armour and modifications in the hull introduced the year before and including reshaped profile in V to improve the resistance against explosions of mines and bombs, in addition to reinforced antimine seats along with the large armoured modules applied on the surfaces of the armoured vehicle and the upgraded hatches weren´t able to avoid the breakage of the IAV hull structure, which was overturned, reduced to a metallic smoking hodpodge and the penetration of the sharpnel inside, losing the lower zone of his left leg and suffering a great hemorrhage that could be stopped in time by the tourniquet made on the thigh area by an American soldier, being evacuated together with a marine which was within the aforementioned armoured vehicle (and who had lost his two legs) to a helicopter, inside which both of them shook their hands in a apontaneous act of mutual solidarity while the aircraft took off.

Those were very tough moments that had their continuity in a painful and protracted rehabilitation requiring not only a great physical strength but also a psychological one, and in which his love for his family, the passion for photography (what he most likes doing in life, together with telling stories which he´s witnessed on the spot and preserving the compromise with society) and the affection and the encouragement from his colleages, turned into the key factors of his recovery, boosted by the progressive knowledge and practise with different kinds of prostheses, along with the remarkable medical aid provided by the Walter Reed National Medical Center in Bethesda (Maryland), the foremost rehabilitation hospital in United States.

Morenatti isn´t always a top-notch war photographer who once and again haas captured with his camera exceedingly representative and defining instants in areas of huge danger, steadily risking his life (though he doesn´t deem his work as a risky occupation, and the most important thing for him is the adventure component of visiting new places, documenting what happens there and make it known to the people all over the world who can´t go there, that the image be understood and to get the message across.) and approaching to the utmost.

He´s a man featuring great humanity and sensitiveness, which has also enabled him to diachronically establish a rapport with the persons he has photographed, eben in the most extreme and wretched contexts, such as the reportage he made on the Gener Violence in Pakistan to women who had suffered attacks with acid, because of squabbles among families, very violent husbands or the rejections to marriage aspirants that they didn´t like.

It´s terrible plight, marked by tragedy, with women victims of a heinous male chauvinism, stigmatized, plunged into grief, immersed in continuous plastic surgeries and facing a very difficult vital struggle to get ahead, doing it with large doses of courage and margin for hope.

Prospects that in Emilio Morenatti´s long path as a photojournalist have had their epicenter in magical moments like the image taken on October 4, 2004 with a long telelens of a group of girls in the hamlet of Ghumaipayan Mahnow, within the province of Badakhshan, in the north of Afghanistan (near the frontier with Tajikistan, around 410 km in the northeast of Kabul), clad in peculiar clothes with lively colours while they watch with curiosity in the distance from a hill the first helicopter they saw in their lives, located behind the photographer; or the one with the Afghan father who utterly elated raise his baby in arms at the refugees camp of Jalozai, near Peshawar (Pakistan) in 2009.
It all a lot of years after discovering photography and beginning with the alchemy and magic of black and white inside his brother Miguel Angel´s home darkroom and experiencing the unutterable thrill realizing how a white paper becomes a photographic image.

His gift to position in the best possible place to shoot and get the best framing is truly indescribable, and is also a clear example of thoroughbred photojournalist devoted body and soul to his work (something epitomized by the superb image made by the likewise AP photographer Ramón Espinosa photographing Emilio Morenatti at a slow shutter speed dressed in shorts and dark blue T-shirt with white stripes in a park of Mexico D.F running with his metallic prothesis on August 28, 2010, living each picture with all-out intensity, built up by other two of his most unique qualities: his great humbleness and comradeship.


- Samuel Aranda: Internationally renown Spanish war photographer with an experience of almost 20 years.

Winner of the World Press Photo of the Year 2011 for his iconic image of a mother comforting his son, wounded during the conflict in Yemen.

A self-made man, being very young he worked in a shop of the Fotoprix chain in Barcelona until he started his professional course in El País and El Periódico de Catalunya newspapers, beginning to work shortly afterwards for EFE Agency in Middle East, photographing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He has worked for France Press Agency since 2004, having made photographic essays in the Western Sahara, Egypt, Morocco, China, Irak, Yemen, Pakistan, Lebanon, Gaza Strip, Colombia and Spain.

Archetype of  "concerned photographer" with a great love for his work and interested in documenting subjects of social nature, forced migrations, wars and all sort of contexts bringing about hardships in humble human beings whom he dignifies with his camera, photographing them with great respect.

His pictures have been published by prestigious newspapers and magazines like National Geographic, Stern, Sunday Times Magazine, Le Monde, El País Semanal and The New York Times, as well as having worked for Corbis and Getty Images.

In 2016 he was bestowed the Ortega y Gasset Award for his coverage of the refugees.

He´s also made:

In Congo Wars are Small and Chaos is Endless, an excellent reportage published by the New York Times on April 30, 2016, with pictures of hundreds of displaced people from the Bambote ethnic group (traditionally inhabitants of the wooden areas) in the Democratic Republic of Congo, bound to take shelter in an old abandoned cotton factory located in the heart of the Nyunzu jungle (in the southeast of the country) next to rusted iron machines which haven´t worked for many years, without any electricity or water, to protect themselves from the wars steadily ravaging the country, and being daily forced to enter the jungle to hunt and be able to survive.

Nomads of Sahel, getting pictures of families who have lived in the frontier between Mauritania and Mali for centuries and whose lives elapse travelling with their personal belongings and animals across the African desert.

It´s a beautiful story told in black and white, faithfully depicting the itinerant existence of these persons (both with full day and night images, while they do different customary activities) and of various animal species vital for their everyday livelyhood and the furtherance of their ancient culture, since cattle raising is fundamental for them, in the same way as the cereals growing.

Crisis of Refugees in Europe, with hair-raising images of refugees who coming from countries at work of Middle East, Asia and Africa arrive at the European coasts after a very dangerous voyage across the Mediterranean Sea on board of overcrammed barges, after enduring countless sufferings and many of them dying along the way.

They´re photographs revealing once and again something which should embarras everybody.

Particularly meaningful in this regard is the impressive photograph of a young mother who has arrived at a beach swimming arduously with her baby sitting and tied to a chair after the vessel in which they went has run aground at some hundred meters from the coast.

The countenance of the terrified and anguished mother, captured by the photographer from an elevated position while she fights tooth and nail to keep her son afloat and prevent him from drowning, is devastating.

Similarly, it´s more than telling another image in which can be seen in the background a family of Syrian refugees lacking water and food who have just arrived at an European village after a hard trek following their getting ashore, while in the foreground you can see, slightly out of focus, six local inhabitants, who are stuffing themselves with meals and drinks, a contrast which is even more underscored by the presence of luxurious necklaces in the shop window of a jewellery appearing in the upper left half of the picture.

On the other hand, within its already extensive production of images highlight photographic essays on The Ebola in Sierra Leona and Guinea Conakry, The Campaign of the Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan, The Rural Development in Guinea Bissau, The Nile Shores, Melilla Back Door of Europe, Marbella, The Economical Crisis in Spain, The Refugees in Yemen, Tunisia in Transition, The Western Mountains of Lybia, Lybia at War, The Revolution in Egypt, The Napolitan Camorra, New York, The Transhumance, Underage Immigrants in Spain, Transnistria a Territory in Dispute, The Bucarest Streets Children, Medellín from Fear to Hope, The War in Lebanon, The Historical Memory in Spain, The Serbian Elections, Gaza, Aral Sea in Uzbekistán, China Gets Ready for the Olympic Games, Pakistan in Kodachrome, Lights and Shadows in Uzbekistán and others.


- Manu BraboInternationally recognized freelance Spanish photojournalist based in Turin (Italy), winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 2013 for his coverage of the War in Syria for the Associated Press Agency between February and December of 2012.

Educated in the classic black and white (of which he is a great lover) and conceptually linked to the heyday of photojournalism throughout thirties, forties, fifties and sixties (when begetting all feasible rapport with the photographed human beings and approaching as much as possible to them at the moment of the photographic act were key factors), he mostly uses 50 mm and 24 mm primes, searching for getting as close as possible to obtain good images and live his pictures with towering excitement, because he doesn´t consider his photographic work as a profession but as a way of life.

He has documented all kind of social conflicts in a number of worldwide countries, including the impact of natural disasters, political changes, popular uprisings, revolutions and civil wars in countries like Lybia, Syria, Kosovo, El Salvador, Haiti, Bolivia, Honduras, Egypt, Ukraine and others.

His reportages have been published by such prestigious international media as The New York Times, Der Spiegel, International Herald Tribune, Die Welt, The Guardian and many others.

He is a member of the MEMO (Memory in Motion) photojournalist cooperative, as well as cofounder of the multimedia magazine featuring the same name along with Fabio Bucciarelli, Guillem Valle, Diego Ibarra and José Colón, with the aim of pushing the story telling with images through the joint use of photography and new technologies like the Full HD and 4K video, the high quality audio, 3D animation and infography, in synergy with texts concerning the pictures obtained and the compromise to narrate conflicts and the way in which their informative coverage is made, merging the viewpoints of five photographers with their own style and expressive way.

His photographic production has stocked a lot of news agencies, among them AP and EPA (European Press Photo Agency) since 2013.

His war images are noteworthy because of their remarkable proximity to the epicenter of the action, their strength and the dramatic visual impact for any observer.

Suffice it to name some instances:

- A soldier of the Lybian forces from Tripoli government is helped by some comrades after being wounded by an IS sniper in the front of Sirte (Lybia) in October 2016.

- The image of another soldier of the Lybian forces of Tripoli government shooting while sitting on the floor with a machine gun against the IS forces through a window from inside the Central Bank of Sirte (Lybia), seriously damaged by combats.

This is a very powerful image, slightly blurred and a bit out of focus (which doesn´t matter at all, since the important thing is to nail down that specific defining moment), resulting from the context of ruling distress, the ground rumbling as a consequence of the bursts of gunfire, the presence of another soldier very near him (who is standing and also opening fire through a further window) and the reaction speed needed by the photographer to get it.

- A Member of the Fast Response Corps of El Salvador Police known as "Hawks" heading with his assault rifle in his hand to a conflict zone in San Salvador (El Salvador) in May 2015 well into the night.

A black and white daunting image, exuding outstanding visual semantics and greatly summing up the situation which is being lived by this Centroamerican country, with its highest levels of violence and murders since the end of its civil war 25 years ago.

The slow shutter speed used and the breathtaking anticipacion ability and speed of movements displayed by the photographer (consolidated by his four previous years as a sports photographer before opting for war photography) have been major aspects to be able to capture the image in the midst of such a frenzied environment, along with the diagonal composition, the hooded face of the policeman trying not to be identified by the dangerous rival gangs and the finger ready to press the trigger of the automatic gun, masterfully synthesizing an almost impossible conundrum to deal with, full of violence, fruit of the more than precarious economical and social situation of a country whose civil population has suffered for many decades the fights for power and money between the rival bands of drug dealers and extortionists, corrupt governments and paramilitary forces at their service which are resulting in more than 6,500 killed people a year.

- The image belonging to his series Frozen Cries in Eastern Ukraine, in which Manu Brabo photographs a woman from Russian descent squatting on the ground, bringing her hands to her face and crying next to the body of a relative killed as a consequence of an alleged projectile from the Ukrainian army which has burst in the area of Semashko, Kirovsky, district of Donetsk (Ukraine).

The ability of the photographer to become so to speak invisible and go unnoticed while getting the picture , the diachronic dream of any good photojournalist, are praiseqorthy, in the same way as the timing accuracy on pressing the shutter release button of his camera just at the most representative instant.

The slightly diagonal composition towards the left, the wise use by the photographer of a wide diaphragm to highlight as much as possible the two persons main characters of the photograph, the visible blood flowing from the head of the killed man in which a piece of sharpnel has made impact, the opposite direction in which both arms have remained in a rather unnatural position and clearly indicating an instant death with convulse falling flat and the deep tear on the upper zone of the left sleeve of his anorak in which fragment of shrapnel has made impact, probably cutting his left arm do contrast powerfully with the macabre everyday life prevailing the bokeh area of the image, at very few meters from the horrific scene: two men (visible after the wooen clear brown cap of the grief-stricken mother) are routinely walking in the opposite direction, as if nothing had happened, while on top of the picture some people are chatting about any subject.

It´s the epitome of a feature of every war: human life´s worth becomes trifling.

 A PHOTOGRAPHER AT YOUR TABLE. REVIEW OF PORTFOLIOS

The selected photographers will be able to show their works and will be advised on the most suitable route to direct their efforts and channel their future in this scope by three recognized authorities as to photographic subjects and analysis of images featuring wise criterion and a experience of a lot of decades:


- Rafael Navarro: A magician of artistic black and white and the photography as a means to express hidden sensations and feelings as well as reflecting inner worlds alien to the depiction of the apparent as a mission, letting the images themselves define what he wants to convey.

His work has been exhibited in more than 700 galleries and both national and international museums since seventies and is part of important collections all over the world.

Within his vast photographic production highlights his distinct interest for the human figure, with the feminine nude and details of her anatomy as constant topics, in addition to his famous diptics loaded with a photographic discourse of his own.

From scratch, his photographic vision has been unique, genuine and faithful to itself, without being vanquished by fads and markets and always with the aim of showing ideas and spawn emotions in the observers, through a myriad of shapes, textures and subtleties often approaching the realm of abstraction, most times with human figure as creative core, and with a commendable diachronic coherence.

Holding sway over each stage of the traditional black and white darkroom and an atavic enthusiast of the contact sheets as a starting approach with respect to the achieved results, he has developed his own negatives and has made his copies on photographic paper for many decades, until feeling the call of colour a few years ago, beginning his period as a digital photographer, but always with a common denominator: to utterly control his photographic yield, particularly the quality standard, the visual interest of images and their delicacy, based on an unfading sentiment driving him to say things and photography as the most feasible way to reveal it, transferring to each of his images what a specific situation or context inspires him, the most important aspect being the artist´s creative ability to beget interesting things, irrespective of the means or instruments used.

He is a full member of the Real Academia de Nobles y Bellas Artes de San Luis and he was awarded the Aragón Goya Prize in October 2013.

An indefatigable worker of the b & w photography, his oeuvre has also often displayed the fusion of vegetal shapes with portions of landscapes, objects and bodies, relentlessly experiencing until finding the most efficient ways to suggest perceptions and thrills, with a photographic language in which you can glimpse the influence of the cinematography by Carl Theodor Dreyer (with its snowy whites and deep blacks of such feature films like Vredens Dag), Ingmar Bergman and the Russian Vanguardism.


- Pablo Juliá:

Photographer and Journalist.

His passion for photography started when he was only 13 yeears old on watching the movie Citizen Kane at a cinema in Cádiz and became impressed by Gregg Toland´s photography marked by its great depth of field enabling the spectators to see the objects and persons in the foreground with a similar sharpness to the ones appearing in the background, catalyzing that the observers could discover by themselves what was more interesting for them in each scene, instead of depending regarding this side on the previous election by the director.

An Associated Professor of the Seville University Communication Faculty, in whose Department of Journalism imparted the subject of Graphic Photojournalism between 1996 and 2007, he´s always deemed that knowing to look is one of the most significant qualities that every good photographer must develop.

He was throughout 20 years linked to the Andalusian Center of Photography (CAF) between 1996 and 2016, being its Director between 2007 and 2016, making an outstanding labor of enhancement of the CAF together with his collaborators Carlos Pérez-Siquier and Matilde Sánchez (widow of Manuel Falces, founder of the CAF in 1992), attaining some important accomplishments like the organization in 2008 of the First International Encounter of Photography Centers, with attendance of 20 countries, as well as historical exhibitions like Jorge Rueda and Emilio Morenatti´s ones, the agreement reached in 2007 with Seville University and the Andalusian Landscape Center to do a double based photographic Biennal and the collaboration of the photographer Manuel Laguillo and the valuing of Latitudes Festival of Photography in Huelva and the Film Archive of Andalusia ( with its great labour of digital restoration) along with the filmmakers Josefina Molina and Julio Diamante.

He´s got a Barcelona University Degree in Modern and Contemporary History, worked throughout some decades as a photojournalist from late sixties, covering all kind of events during the Spanish Transition for El Socialista magazine and subsequently in Andalusian specialized illustrated publications like La Ilustración Regional and Torneo.

Shortly after, he was Press Head of the Junta de Andalucía together with the journalist Lola Cintado, in addition to collaborating during the second half of seventies with Cambio 16, Gentleman, Posible, etc, which published a number of his pictures.

In 1980 he began his path in El País, where he was Head of Photography until 2007, making reportages all over the world and interviews to personalities of politics and famous artists like Tina Turner and Jeanne Moreau.

He´s been author of a lot of individual and collective photographic exhibitions.

Andalusian Prize of Journalism in 1994 and Fotopress of Culture, he is a man boasting great visual culture and criterion in the evaluation of photographic images, because throughout all of his professional trajectories one of his top priority goals has been to constantly see the pictures of other photojournalists and the preservation of the concept of photography as a universal language which mustn´t be localist.

The setting up of the Andalusian Center of Photography in 2007 meant a crucial turning point which atarted with the works of nothing less than thirty-eight top-notch international photographers like Henri Cartier-Bresson, Martine Franck, William Klein, Martin Parr, Ferdinando Scianna, Gabriel Cualladó, Carlos Pérez-Siquier and many others, all of them going to Almería for a week to get pictures, with the agreement that every one would leave six images, albeit finally they had the courtesy of delivering all of them. Even, Cartier Bresson gave away two wonderful drawings made by him.


- José María Díaz-Maroto:

Highly experienced photographer with a broad professional career.

He has regularly exposed his works since 1981 and began in photography in a self-teaching way, subsequently learning from different photographers of the Madrid School, also turning into a frquent attendant to workshops and the Encounters of Arlés (France).

He´s published more than 100 articles in a wide range of magazines and newspapers since 1983 like Foto Profesional, El País, Diario El Mundo, Revista FV, La Fotografía, Diorama, Photo, Exit, Europ-Art, ABC, Visual, etc, along with abundant publications, books and catalogues.

He is a photographer with a restless gaze and an indefatigable traveller, whether in Cuban hidden places, lacustrian populations of Amazonas river or sandy areas of Gata Cape, who has focused his creative interest in everyday reportages, themed portraits and landscapes in which he shows his technical mastery often reaching its apex with superb prints of pigment inks on baryta paper.

He was founder of Entrefotos (the first photographic fair of Madrid) in 1998 together with Luis Baylón, Evaristo Delgado and Pasquale Caprile, and his President between that year and 2005.

He has also been commissar of more than fifty photographic exhibitipons and projects across the Spanish geography like Naked Water, Hidden and Mitographies for the Canal de Madrid Foundation; Seven Decades of Spanish Contemporary Photography and Continuous Light for the Andalusian Center of Photography, Other Cultures, Other Frontiers for Madrid Community, 15 Years of Spanish Contemporary Photography, Fighting the Void by Cristina García Rodero during the Ciudad de Alcobendas International Prize of Photography and others.

Among his awards highlight the Purificación García Prize 2006, University of Murcia, Plastic Arts Area 2008 First Prize, the Cantabria Government Plastic Arts Prize 2008, the Photography CCM 2008 Award First Prize and the Purificación García Prize 2012
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On the other hand, his images reflect not only a highly consolidated technical mastery visible in works like The Dollar´s Wink, Scotland and many others, but also large doses of curiosity and a conspicuous observation talent, striving after keeping his special and intimate vision regarding the persons and contexts he photographs.