Photojournalism Hub x Riverside Studios 03rd June

Mariusz Śmiejek is an independent photographer, visual storyteller, and educator with over 20 years of experience specializing in capturing the raw narratives of human and social conditions. Renowned for documenting a wide range of subjects including post-conflict communities, refugee crises, child slavery, human trafficking, and systemic abuse. Recipient of prestigious awards in international photography competitions, his work has been exhibited globally and featured in renowned publications globally including The New York Times, National Geographic, and the British Journal of Photography, among many others. www.mariuszsmiejek.com

Not Surrendering tells a visual story specifically about the struggle of loyalists to shape a distinct identity in post-conflict Northern Ireland. The documentary narrative introduces us to the daily lives of the local British working-class as well as members of its illegal paramilitary groups. Recognised as terrorist organizations until recently, these associations still carry weight, sow fear, and control Northern Ireland’s Ulster.
By focusing on the spaces which the book’s subjects inhabit, aspects of their daily lives, and the particularities of their neighbourhoods separated by ominous ‘peace walls,’ the photography brings to the fore the psychological state of siege which permeates working-class districts in Northern Ireland. The story also spotlights the atmosphere of despair which accompanies each successive generation – trapped socially and mentally in unprocessed traumas from which it cannot escape.
The aim of the Not Surrendering is to increase awareness and knowledge about processes of reconciliation in post-conflict societies that are divided territorially, politically, nationally, and religiously.
The story this volume highlights the difficulties NGO and other grassroots projects face while working with difficult youth from families deeply involved in the conflict.
The photographic images illustrate the tensions arising during celebrations of national identity, during which especially members of paramilitary groups openly fan the flames of hatred towards their neighbours. This directly affects the indoctrination of the youngest who actively participate in numerous events of this type, leading often to recruitment of young people into paramilitary associations or organised criminal groups.
This has been a personal, individual project from the very beginning to the end (2010-2020); partly supported at the very end stage by Artists Emergency Programme grant from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and The National Lottery.

Roland Ramanan is a London based documentary photographer, born in 1966 with a background in music and education. He developed a passion for photography around 2010, initially through street photography. In 2012 he started a long term documentary project on a vulnerable group of people who gravitate towards a corner of east London called Gillett Square which is to be published by Dewi Lewis as the book “Dominoes”. This work has been featured in Vice magazine among others and has won various awards including being shortlisted for the Royal Photographic Society documentary awards 2023. In 2022 he was one of the finalists in the Portrait of Britain awards. Roland’s current project focuses on the London roller skate scene and its relationship to black culture. https://rolandramanan.com/

Dominoes is a unique and vibrant mosaic of the lives that float in and around a particular corner of Hackney in London’s East End. The book is populated by intimate pictures of people who have experienced addiction and pain as well as the deep joys of the community of which they are a part. Gillett Square was derelict and underdeveloped for years until, in the 1990s it became an experiment in urban regeneration. Like the Dominoes they play in the square, those lives are often precarious. For ten years from 2012 I was privileged to be allowed into the lives and homes of some of those I have met, to photograph their fights and struggles; their families and their lovers. Some of these people are now my friends and some are no longer with us. The participants I am closest to form the heart of the book and I’m sure that bond will continue. The work gives us honest glimpses into lives that we may often turn away from but always with a sense of hope. Dominoes touches on universal themes of love, death, hope and the evolution of urban communities.

BECOME A PJH MEMBER
Consider becoming a member of the Photojournalism Hub and receive the benefits of free access to events, resources, premier editorial content, portfolio reviews, and discounts on entry to our photography exhibitions, training and in our shop, whilst you will be supporting our work advocating, advancing social justice and human rights, amplifying community voices and enhance access to media to those facing social, economic and structural challenges. If there were ever a time to join us, it is now. Support the Photojournalism Hub from as little as £1 every month. If you can, please consider supporting us with a regular amount each month. Thank you. JOIN US HERE

Photojournalism Hub x Riverside Studios 22nd April

22nd April 2024, 7 pm
Riverside Studios
101 Queen Caroline Street
London W6 9BN

To join: HERE

Photojournalism Hub and Riverside Studios are delighted to announce Sascha Klamp and Valeria Luongo as the featured photographers for ‘In Focus,’ a captivating series of photography events. This series present photographers whose work engage with social documentary photo storytelling, using the lens as a powerful tool for engagement, exploration and raising awareness. The event includes presentations, live interactive Q&As and a social.
Our guests of this edition have a background or work with an anthropological approach, using documentary photography to present stories that capture and explore community and individual memory, archives and rituals.

Valeria Luongo is an Italian documentary photographer, filmmaker, and anthropologist who’s based between Mexico and the UK. Her photographic approach is characterised by working on long term projects. Her work explores stories regarding gender, spirituality and rituals and has been featured in National Geographic, The Guardian, BBC, GEO Magazine and exhibited internationally.

“When Women Fly” is a  project about a group of indigenous women from Cuetzalan del Progreso, Mexico, challenging gender roles by participating in a traditionally male ritual called Danza de los Voladores.
The ritual begins with a ceremonial dance. Five participants then ascend a 30-metre pole and jump off the top, head first, tied to ropes as they revolve around the pole towards the ground.
Historically, only men were allowed to partake in the ritual. However, a few women in Cuetzalan have recently joined the practice. The flying women defy traditional gender roles, symbolising transformation within their social context. Since 2022 I’ve been working alongside several women and girls who fly, documenting their everyday lives among their community.

Sascha Klamp is a British/German multi-award winning Documentary Filmmaker, Photo-documentary Journalist and Producer based in London, UK. He spent the majority of his career as an investor and entrepreneur which enabled him to travel across frontier and emerging markets. His photography practice centres on highlighting social impact and social justice affairs which is deeply rooted in his curiosity to learn more of the world around him. He tells frontline human and community stories based on empathy for the situation and the people involved. His thinking is informed by his interest in ethnology and social anthropology. Sascha exhibited a small selection of his The Art of Seeing, The Art of Remembering project in London in November 2022. His work was highly commended by the TPF Social Documentary Awards (Professional Category, Series) for his The Art of Seeing, The Art of Remembering work. Sascha completed his MA Photojournalism & Documentary Photography studies at the University of the Arts (Distinction), London. He also holds an MBA (Bayes Business School, London) and a Masters in Law, LLM (King’s College, London), and a BSc International Securities, Investment & Banking from Henley Business School (ICMA Centre). Filmography: “The Art of Seeing, The Art of Remembering” (2022), “The Blockade” (2023).

In a remote village in Kosovo, the past casts a long shadow. A single family of 2500 souls, now in its 13th generation, struggles to find its place in a changing world. Based on the Directors engagement with the community and renowned Community Archival work, KINSHIP tells the story of one family’s search for belonging.
We meet Rabit, the community’s Doctor, who recounts his heart-breaking tale of being ‘gifted’ to his uncle as a young boy. An all too common practice rooted in ancient customs. He grapples with the trauma of his stolen innocence. Meanwhile, Couple Mumin and Qamile Dermaku tell their moving story of how they met, the challenge he went through gifting a brother to a neighbour and his wife’s struggle to join the ‘jungle’ of a remote community. Expecting mother Florentina faces her own struggle. Pregnant with her first child, she dreams of a better future. But is that future possible here? Or must she also make the painful choice to leave everything she has ever known behind? The village Elders tell their stories aided by black-and-white photographs sourced from their family photo albums. They recount stories of happier times but also times of conflict and change. These memories contradict with the experience of the younger generations who cannot imagine a rural life with its limited resources and opportunities. Joining the diaspora is a potential way out to seek a fortune and future elsewhere. The cleric focuses on holding the community together. But his own story contradicts the ambitions of his community. The state looks away from the Kanun law/ tradition (Kanun of Lek Dukagjini). The honour code (vendetta in Italy) contradicts with the country’s ambition to become a full EU member. We engage with Child Psychologists who explain the harm done to children being gifted to family members and how that trauma informs their choices. Running away from it all sounds like a sound choice for many.

BECOME A PJH MEMBER
Consider becoming a member of the Photojournalism Hub and receive the benefits of free access to events, resources, premier editorial content, portfolio reviews, and discounts on entry to our photography exhibitions, training and in our shop, whilst you will be supporting our work advocating, advancing social justice and human rights, amplifying community voices and enhance access to media to those facing social, economic and structural challenges. If there were ever a time to join us, it is now. Support the Photojournalism Hub from as little as £1 every month. If you can, please consider supporting us with a regular amount each month. Thank you. JOIN US HERE

IN FOCUS

26th February 2024, 7 pm
Riverside Studios
101 Queen Caroline Street
London W6 9BN

To Join us: HERE

Photojournalism Hub and Riverside Studios are delighted to announce Denise Laura Baker and Etienne Bruce as the featured photographers for ‘In Focus,’ a captivating series of photography events. This series delves deep into the realm of socially engaged documentary photography, using the lens as a powerful tool for engagement and exploration. The event includes presentations, live interactive Q&As and a social.
Etienne Bruce will present us Xenitia, which is an archive, centered on displacement to Greece. It is framed by two motifs: “nostos” (Classical Greek; to return home, homecoming) and “algos” (Classical Greek; pain, grief). Together, these affect-laden words form the root of “nostalgia”. “Xenitia” itself is a Greek term that encompasses the state of being a foreigner, otherness, estrangement, loss, distance, and a profound yearning for home soil. And Dr. Denise Laura Baker will share Deeds, Not Words: motivations and methods of resistance from a photographer’s perspective, currently being shown until April 13th at Gallery 74, Waterside Arts in Sale, Manchester, which explores the myriad ways photography crosses into the realm of activism and the complex relationship between photojournalism and activism.

Denise Laura Baker is a socially engaged photojournalist and documentary photographer and storyteller, focusing on environmental and social issues, climate change, activism, and community. Through these she explores themes of connection, journeys, identity, change and transition. Denise’s photographic and creative work draws on influences from her career as a visual artist, and her previous career as an ethnographic psychologist where she interviewed and collected the stories of the people with whom she worked. In March 2020 she was featured as an emerging female photographer in film  https://analoguewonderland.co.uk/blogs/film-news/female-voices-in-film-denise-laura-baker and in 2021 and 2022 she won PX3 State of the World. She has published numerous photographs in the mainstream press as well as photo essays in magazines such as New Internationalist, Open Democracy and Novara Media. Her work has been featured in group exhibitions as well as solo shows most notably LLAWN Llandudno Arts Weekend in 2019, Galeri Caernarfon, North Wales 2022, Islington Climate Centre 2023, The Black E Gallery in Liverpool as part of The World Transformed 2023 and Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool 2023. Denise’s work is currently being shown until April 13th at Gallery 74, Waterside Arts in Sale, Manchester. 
Denise teaches and mentors, runs community arts workshops, and has received funding through the Arts Council for Wales, Creative Gwynedd, RBKC Creative Grants, The Westway Trust and Imaginary Millions. With Deeds, Not Words (Deeds, Not Words: motivations and methods of resistance from a photographer’s perspective) Denise explores the myriad ways photography crosses into the realm of activism and the complex relationship between photojournalism and activism. In this project she examines protest through the female eye, which has enabled her to connect with her own background in activism as well as others, and her relationship to photography as activism. @deniselaurabaker

Etienne Bruce is an Anglo-French visual artist, editorial photographer and educator currently based in London, UK. Her project-based work is a form of documentation driven by an engagement with the nature of the photographic image, which often includes an element of recording oral histories. A preoccupation with the relationship between form and content has led her to embrace different modes of expression including text, movement, sound, space, sequence and literary forms as portals through which to re-examine documentary image-making practice and embrace its inherent ambiguity. Through her work, Etienne seeks to challenge her perceptions and reinterpret things as she understands them while always striving to engage respectfully and collaboratively with the people and stories that are central to her practice. Etienne is a member of Women Photograph, she is Education & Training Manager at The Photography Foundation, and her book Xenitia was published by Zone6 Press in 2023. @etienne_bruce

BECOME A PJH MEMBER
Consider becoming a member of the Photojournalism Hub and receive the benefits of free access to events, resources, premier editorial content, portfolio reviews, and discounts on entry to our photography exhibitions, training and in our shop, whilst you will be supporting our work advocating, advancing social justice and human rights, amplifying community voices and enhance access to media to those facing social, economic and structural challenges. If there were ever a time to join us, it is now. Support the Photojournalism Hub from as little as £1 every month. If you can, please consider supporting us with a regular amount each month. Thank you. JOIN US HERE

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