Major Project/ Projeto Final 2015

DisperseInsight_13

Untitled #13, Disperse Insight / Sem Título #13, Disperse Insight (Olhar Disperso)

EN/  Major Project 2015

This time in 2015 I submitted my Final Major Project for my Photography Degree at University of West London. I worked on it from 2014 to 2015, in between lots of changes in my life. I felt proud and relieved for managing to finish it and achieve a good result.

After 3 years of studying the subject I have chosen as what is gradually building into a career, I felt the impact of leaving the university and trying to get into the industry. But above all, what thrills me the most is to remember I came a long way from moving schools, to moving continents and at the end graduated in London! It is funny to think I didn’t finish education in my home country, and that I am here with a diploma.

PT/   Projeto Final 2015

Este momento em 2015 eu apresentei o meu projeto final (conhecido como TCC) para o meu curso de Fotografia na faculdade University of West London, como o nome diz, no Oeste de Londres. Trabalhei nele em 2014-2015, entre muitas mudanças na minha vida. Senti-me orgulhosa e aliviada por conseguir terminá-lo e conseguir um bom resultado.

Após 3 anos estudando a matéria que escolhi como o que está sendo construído gradualmente em uma carreira, senti o impacto de deixar a universidade e tentar entrar na indústria fotográfica. Mas, acima de tudo, o que me emociona mais é lembrar que vim de um longo caminho desde as mudanças de escolas, para  mudanças de continentes  e no final se formar em Londres! É engraçado pensar eu não terminei o ensino  médio no meu país de origem, e que eu eu estou aqui com um diploma.

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Brazilian Embassy in London

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EN/  Brazilian Embassy in London

“Wembley to Soweto to Brazil” is exhibiting in London again. The project run in 2014 during the FIFA World Cup and has been exhibited at The Hospital Club before.

I am proud to see my photographs at the Brazilian Embassy together with the photographs of our brilliant students from Sao Paulo´s favela, whose I helped mentoring.
The exhibition is open to the public from 6th May to 13th May, from 10am to 6pm.

To see more of my photographs of this project, check my Flickr album here.
Get to know more about Wembley to Soweto charity on their website: wembleytosoweto.com.
Photos of the opening evening bellow.

PT/  Embaixada Brasileira em Londres

“Wembley to Soweto to Brazil” está em exposição novamente em Londres. O projeto ocorreu em 2014 durante a Copa do Mundo FIFA e já esteve em exposição no The Hospital Club em Londres.

Estou orgulhosa de ver minhas fotografias na Embaixada Brasileira junto com as fotografias dos nossos jovens estudantes e talentosos da comunidade Jardim Colombo em São Paulo, os quais eu ajudei a orientar.
A exposição estará aberta ao público entre os dias 6 e 13 de Maio, das 10am as 6pm.

Para ver mais de minhas fotos desse projeto, veja meu album no Flickr aqui.
Saiba mais sobre o projeto Wembley to Soweto no site deles: wembleytosoweto.com.
Fotos da noite de abertura a baixo.

Left Behind

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Untitled 1/ Sem Título 1

 

EN/   Left Behind 

In this post I will show you the first project I did at University in 2012, about objects I found on the streets. This post will be in the format of the “6on6 project tag”, which the idea is to show 6 photos of the same theme on the 6th of each month. The project has 9 final photos, so in order to see the whole project, click here!

PT/   Left Behind (Deixado para Trás)

Neste post vou mostrar o primeiro projeto que eu fiz na universidade em 2012, sobre os objetos que encontrei nas ruas. Este post vai estar no formato da “tag/projeto 6on6”, que a ideia é mostrar 6 fotos do mesmo tema no dia 6 de cada mês. O projeto tem 9 fotos finais, então se estiver a fim de ver todo o projeto, clique aqui!

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Questioning The American Way/Questionando o Estilo Americano

margaret bourke-white

EN/   Questioning The American Way

A single photograph can be extremely powerful when it puts together photographic, historic and social concepts. When a simple first look at a photograph evokes curiosity and questions us what we think that we know about determined society and its polarities causing emotional impact, we know it deserves a further analysis. It is the case of Margaret Bourke-White’s photograph called “Kentucky Flood”, taken in 1937 around the time of the Great Depression in America.

During the Great Depression post-war in the United States, the Farm Security Administration (FSA) was created as an effort to combat rural poverty and support farm workers and their families. As part of this program, photographers as well as writers were hired for this political mission to document and check under what circumstances and how people who depended on farms were living. These documentary photographs would work as educational material and press information to the public showing these people’s reality and needs. This way, the American politics would be demonstrating to the rest of the society, that actions were being taken in favour of this people.

The choice to use photography as the medium to spread this reality was not simply aleatory, unlike any other medium it refers the “truth to reality” of the facts, by considering that the photograph exists because they were there, it was taken therefore it actually happened, with the result shown in a fast and realistic way. Also the program’s photographers “were warned repeatedly not to manipulate their subjects in order to get more dramatic images, and their pictures were almost always printed without cropping or retouching” (Carlebach, 1988:20).

Working on a documentary style, Margaret Bourke-White was the first female photographer to work at Life magazine, where her photograph was published on the first cover. The weekly Life magazine was initially all photographic addressing American news, life style and politics, marking its place in the history of photojournalism and being considered one of the most important contribution to publishing. At this time, documentary photography and journalism started to work together more often, either for press or more detailed studies followed by articles like in Life magazine. The fact that the photograph is in Black and White is not only because colour film was not too common yet, but for a conventional reason mainly with documentary photography that the photographers using Black and White were the serious professionals who were looking at content and real meanings to their photographs. This mere convention has been around in the modern photography’s world until now, and makes us question if there really is a dramatic difference with the result when photographing in monochrome or not. For this particular photograph, which is very detailed with a number o people using their accessories and bags, the billboard’s text and visual information would probably make it look too crowded if in colour, as it has a lot of information, specially if we imagine that each person is wearing a different colour. In Black and White it all gets neutralised as if the colours are not so important for the context of this image, making it clearer, more realistic contact with the scene as it gets less interferences and easier to see the message behind it.

Parallel to the FSA another governmental program was running in the United States, the Work Projects Administration (WPA) which was formed in 1935, as part of a number of the New Deal agencies at that time, and this program was involved with employing people to carry out public works projects, and more notably it was giving work opportunities to artists linked all media/entertainment (music, drama, literacy and Arts). It was when the combination of artists and visual communication helped to create posters and billboards seen across America which worked as propaganda both to publish and advertise community activities and stimulate the society in a positive way, to bring back the “American Way”. This played important role to that recent hopeless society which was trying to emerge once again after the Great Depression, not only economically but also getting involved socially and to give back people’s self esteem.

They were composed by strong imagery made with illustrations, photos, texts and were colourfully graphic each one to convey a different message to the public, for varied audience at all the ages.

For this reason, the billboard that appears on Margaret’s photograph is as important to be analysed individually and as a piece of imagery which provides information about that historic time and its peculiar social behaviour values. The headline saying “World’s Highest Standard of Living” is a reference to the American’s standard of living, which is known and seen as reference around the world, and it is being illustrated there by a happy family formed by a couple with two kids and even a dog all onboard the family’s car. It demonstrates that they are a well structured family, in economical terms as they are able to have the comfort to own car, and consequently living in harmony and emotionally balanced. The second text is “There’s no way like the American Way”, which is again to stimulate American society reflecting back to what they have already mentioned is precious for them, the “Highest Standard of Living” is what differentiates them as a strong nation which was fighting to re-establish. This is to motivate, reaffirm and persuade the population that the government is working under crisis to maintain their honour, once they have got jobs back with FSA’s help, they could now feel more comfortable to invest on social life, consuming products to help increasing the economical movement in the country.

Getting to know all this background information, leads us to understand more what makes this a iconic image and the scenario behind its details. Looking closer to the photograph and the day it was taken, one more important information will reveal the photo’s contrasts and polarities, and even controversiality.

The photograph is a result of many others shots that Life magazine published, while Margaret was covering the incident of the devastating Ohio River Flood in 1937 which claimed close to 400 lives and left around one million people without homes in five states during the winter of that same year. These people there standing in line, are waiting for food, water and clothing from a relief station as a result of the flood, and many were probably homeless or having to live in shared accommodation at that critical moment. This is what most impacts us as viewers when we notice that they are right in front of the FSA’s billboard, suddenly the way that the poster turns out to be just a false illusion of prosperity when the reality of these people confronts the illustration. This way the photograph immediately warns the population that in fact other problems were out of politician’s control, and also that “The World’s Highest Standard of Living” is not for all the citizens, not all are being able to enjoy the “American Way”.

It is the point when the clever use of composition emphasises the well structured, promising, happy family and the poster’s hypocrisy with the hopeless, disadvantaged and vulnerable families in that queue. The way she chose to keep the people in line in the foreground, frames the centralised billboard making the viewers naturally look at both subjects in the picture and starts finding in what aspects they relate, also making comparisons and even stipulate which of the two subjects is the one in focus. It is as if the tension is concentrated in the bottom of the photograph, as there is a dark side or negative polarity where everyone looks serious, and the other part which is the most part of the image covered by the billboard is the light side or positive part of this polarity, containing the smiles and messages of hope. The line created by both the queue and the framed composition, crosses a new line for one more issue this photograph covers. The polarity in the image gets clear at this point, that in addition to the Great Depression and government’s attempts to re-establish the country and the flood as a natural disaster, the Americans portrayed in the poster are not the same ones who are waiting for food in the line. The ones who suffered more with all of these dramatic situations were the black Americans neighbourhoods, the black Americans that are not appearing as part of the campaign. Should not them be living on that same “Highest Standard of Living” the poster talks about? Or maybe, they were not yet included as being part of the American Way, as racially and economically they are not matching the American families and would not be portrayed how they were used to, when having the poster as reference. For sure, this is a very rich image simply created by being at the right place, at the right time, which gives the photographer the status of being a witness to the scene. It is demonstrated by the detail on top right corner of the image a windscreen wiper and at the same time creating a realistic eye level perspective as we were in the other side of the road, showing that it was not even necessary to get off the car to be able to create what now is a classic photograph of a specific period of time in the history. It reaffirms that it makes real difference when opting between to stop to both “look” and “see”, and that the photographer’s sensibility and approach to the scene is essential to involve both context and technique in a photograph that can make the audience get an emotional response to it.

This photograph that at first looks unpretentious combines two very strong and different types of imagery, in which together narrates the story of vulnerable families in contrast with the pretentious governmental campaign during the Great Depression time, using Art to try providing more hope to the population in a certainly unequal way, when compared to the poor living circumstances of the WPA’s farmers and those black Americans at the suburban areas affected by the Ohio River Flood.

In a time where photographers played important place contributing politically this photographs works as a subversive propaganda in a new campaign, transforming people’s opinions about it by questioning the American Way. Making it a very successful example that: “The photograph exists within a wider body of reference and relates to a series of wider histories”(Clarke, 1997:27).



PT/   Questionando o Estilo Americano

Uma única fotografia pode ser extremamente poderosa quando se reúnem conceitos fotográficos, históricos e sociais. Quando um primeiro simples olhar para uma fotografia evoca a curiosidade e nos pergunta o que nós pensamos que sabemos sobre determinada sociedade e as suas polaridades causando impacto emocional, sabemos que merece uma análise mais aprofundada. É o caso de a fotografia de Margaret Bourke-White chamada de “Kentucky Flood” (Enchente na cidade de Kentucky), tirada em 1937 na época da Grande Depressão nos Estados Unidos.

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Exhibition: “Memento” at Open Arts Café

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EN/   Exhibition: “Memento” at Open Arts Café

Described on their own website, Open Arts Café is “a monthly themed arts evening giving artists from all mediums a chance to present new and original work at various stages of development. It was established in 2008 by Maya Levy with Tyne Rafaeli to give artists a chance to present their work in developmental and/or performance stage in a non-pressurised, dynamic and constructive atmosphere.”

http://www.openartscafe.com/

When I got to know January’s theme, “Memento”, I crossed my fingers that they would still have space for someone to exhibit, and thought straight way of my “Melancholia” project from May 2014. To get to know about the project, click here!

Maya Levy organised the night brilliantly at the West London Synagogue in which supports the seasonal events. As artists, we had all support of technical materials to be able to exhibit/perform, following a schedule which gave each artist time with the audience.

To get to know more about the artists that included: Poetry, Drama, Dance, Comedy, Music, Painting and Photography (me), check the event’s page on Art Rabbit here, and find their links.

It was the first time that I participate in a collaborative exhibition that engages artists from different mediums, putting together their projects around the same theme. Certainly a very important chance to show my work, to be within artists and their enriching ideas.

Now check some photos of the exhibition and the show:

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PT/   Exposição: “Momento” na Open Arts Café

Descrito em seu próprio site, Open Arts Café é “uma noite de artes mensal e temática dando artistas de todos os meios a oportunidade de apresentar trabalho novo e original em vários estágios de desenvolvimento. Foi criada em 2008 por Maya Levy com Tyne Rafaeli para dar aos artistas uma oportunidade de apresentar o seu trabalho em fase de desenvolvimento e / ou desempenho em um ambiente não-pressurizado, dinâmica e construtiva “.

http://www.openartscafe.com/

Quando soube do tema de janeiro, “Memento”, eu cruzei meus dedos para que eles ainda tivessem espaço para alguém para expor, e logo lembrei do meu projeto “Melancholia” de Maio de 2014. Para conhecer sobre o projeto, clique aqui!

Maya Levy organizou a noite de forma brilhante na sinagoga West London Synagogue, que apoia os eventos sazonais. Como artistas, nós tivemos todo o apoio de materiais técnicos para poder exibir / executar performance, seguindo um cronograma que deu a cada artista seu momento com o público.

Para conhecer mais sobre os artistas que incluíram: Poesia, Teatro, Dança, Comédia, Música, Pintura e Fotografia (eu), consulte a página do evento no Art Rabbit aqui, e encontrar os seus links.

Foi a primeira vez que eu pude participar de uma exposição colaborativa que envolve artistas de diferentes mídias, reunindo seus projetos em torno do mesmo tema. Certamente uma oportunidade muita importância para mostrar o meu trabalho, além de estar entre de artistas e suas idéias enriquecedoras.

Agora veja algumas fotos da exposição e da noite à cima! 😉

A Letter to Editors/ Uma Carta para os Editores

EveningStandard

Uncredited Image/A Letter to Editors

EN/   A letter to Editors

If you grabbed a copy of the Evening Standard on the 30th July 2015, you would find a copy of an uncredited image of mine! The article featured the Wembley to Soweto’s exhibition, at The Hospital Club Gallery in Covent Garden on 20th to 24th August 2015.

“Dear Editors,

Today I got really excited to have my first photograph published in a newspaper with great visibility like Evening Standard. In News, the article written by Miranda Bryant, it has been featured the upcoming exhibition at The Hospital Club, of the photographs taken during the Wembley to Soweto project in Brazil World Cup 2014, in which I participated as a photography mentor together with John Cole and David Westhead. These photographs were also exhibited in Sao Paulo’s British Embassy and at the Community Centre in the Colombo Favela where we were based.

I can not stress how much I felt disappointed with the fact that my photo, on the left side of the text, did not get credited, neither at least I got a mention on the text as Thapelo did for his image on the right hand side.

For an emerging photographer like me, it is difficult to get the chance of having a photograph published like this, and my chance of visibility and prestige for the work I produced with Wembley to Soweto, has been taken from me with the simple fact of ignoring the authorship of the image, which would have been easily mentioned here.

For some, photographs are just illustrations next to an article. For photographers, they are the result of our dedication to our careers, just like I believe articles and publications are for editors and journalists.

I expect a rapid response on this issue, a respectful and satisfying way of compensation towards me.

Regards,

Tariana Pestana “

And as a response I received:

“Dear Tariana,

I’m really sorry you were disappointed that we didn’t mention your name. The images were provided by the people who are doing PR for the exhibition and there was no suggestion that the inclusion of credits was obligatory. I’m afraid it isn’t something we do as a matter of course for every picture we publish.

Our picture editor has said he would be prepared in the circumstances to pay you a fee to mitigate your disappointment.

Kind regards
Will Gore
Deputy Managing Editor
London Evening Standard, The Independent, & Independent on Sunday “

It is quite upsetting really, having to chase for your own rights. Enough is said, but maybe not enough has been done to prevent it.

Photograph from Brazil 2014 project, on Wembley to Soweto Workshop during Brazil 2014 World Cup. See all photos on my Flickr.


PT/   Uma carta aos Editores

Se você pegou uma cópia do Evening Standard no dia 30 de julho de 2015, você teria encontrado uma cópia com uma foto sem créditos a mim! O artigo destacou a exposição Wembley to Soweto, no Hospital Clube Gallery em Londres, Covent Garden em 20-24 agosto de 2015.

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