This week on Photojournalism Now: Friday Round Up – the experience of an ICU nurse in New York caught on camera in an emotive photo essay, and the Australian photographers who have made the shortlist for Portrait of Humanity 2020. Plus the Alexia Foundation’s 2020 Grant round opens in September (so you have a couple of months to get your project together!).
Karen Cunningham – A City Nurse
Karen Cunningham is an ICU nurse in New York City. She is also a photographer. In April, with permission, she took her camera into the ICU at Lenox Hill Hospital where she works, to take pictures of her colleague and friend, Cady Chaplin. The story was published on May 4 in The New Yorker.
These photographs are intimate, visceral and quite frankly, traumatic. They give us an inkling into the life of those that care for us in our most dire moments. Rarely are healthcare workers given a second thought, we (as in society) just expect doctors and nurses to be there for us, to have all the answers. But these professionals are people too and it is under immense strain that they perform their duties everyday, even when they wish they could curl up in bed and shut out the horror of their world.
This collection of pictures moved me in the same way as the portraits of healthcare workers in Pesaro, Italy by visual journalist Alberto Giuliani featured on Photojournalism Now in April. They are important, not only as documents of evidence, as a visual archive of the pandemic, but also as a reminder of the sacrifice that individuals make everyday to enable our society to function. This is humanity.
You can see more pictures and read the full story at The New Yorker.
Portrait of Humanity 2020
There are seven Australian photographers shortlisted in this year’s Portrait of Humanity, a joint project between creator 1854 Media (who also publish the British Journal of Photography) and Hoxton Mini Press who will publish the book. Two hundred pictures have been shortlisted, and all will appear in the book which is available later this month. The winning 100 images will be announced in September and exhibited internationally on Clear Channel digital screens.
The Australians shortlisted are: Brian Cassey, who has two images in the shortlist, Biljana Jurukovski (no photo supplied), Kathryn MacPhee, Haley McHaffe, Anne Moffat, Cathy Ronalds, and Antoine Veling.
The shortlisted images will also be projected in space! “1854 Media has teamed up with Sent Into Space, a company that specialises in taking images of the Earth from (the) edge of space…a framed screen…will exhibit all shortlisted images 111,000 feet in the air. A 360 degree camera will be attached so the photographers will be able to see their work against the backdrop of our amazing planet.” Perhaps aliens will enjoy the projections too!
Alexia Grants – Professional & Student Documentary Competition
The Alexia Grants are designed to aid student and professional visual journalists to create projects that inspire social change. Diversity in topics, creators and approaches including collaborations are encouraged. The Alexia Professional Grant is $20,000 (USD). The Alexia Student Grant is $1000 (USD) plus one semester’s tuition (a fellowship) at Syracuse University, New York which administers the Grant Fund.
Submissions will be accepted from September 14 to October 5, 2020. Winners will be announced on (or around) November 17.