Story - NOMINEE: Stefano Stranges
The two faces of the rebellion
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Ukraine, 2014. A country divided by internal tensions between those who look up to Europe and those who still feel a strong legacy (and attraction) to the neighboring former Soviet power, a country subject to international political pressure and torn in the east by a war more and more painful. In this alternate sequence of photos, we highlight the unexpected parallels between the movements of the militants of the Right Sektor, who train in a secret camp on the outskirts of the capital, and the dancers who animate the night shows in the most popular gay clubs in Kiev. Two sides which are so different – but which also could appear so similar, having seen a strong patriotism uniting them – Ukraine today.
When I was young I supposed that photography was a bad stunt of reality. My knowleadge of photography was focused in the postcard-images of my family and friends in some beautiful locations of the world. Initially I was quite disturbed by these images, and I used to think that my memory of a place or an event was definitely brighter than a photograph of the same. When I was 21 there was a simple moment that I was instinctive to frame with my hands. From that moment I decided to have always with me a small analogic camera to capture the situations and objects that intrigued me. Was the 2001. Since then I decided to study the history of photography and to know the works of the famous photographers and photoreporters. I was totally captured in particulary by the power of the poetry that Sebastiao Salgado could convey. I think that I can consider him as my mentor!
In January 2012 I attended a "Masterclass" of the renowned agency MAGNUM, participating in a workshop with ace photographer Alex Majoli. My projects and my work starts by a social and sociological approach and it is determinated by the empathy between my subject and me, that's why in my photography I aim to put across my own artistic ideas whilst maintaining the original beauty or specific cultural aspect of the place and subject matter.
In the last years I was invited to conduct several meetings about my photographic projects, including a seminar at Pailan School of International Studies, Calcutta, january 2013 and a workshop/seminar for Slice of Art in Mumbai, august 2014.
2015: The series "The two faces of rebellion-The Ukraine crisis 2014" has been shortlisted for the Athens Photo festival 2015.
2016: Golden Orchid international photo contest "The plastic village - Bangladesh" third Prize – series