Message from my friend Alicia Smith
PROGRAMS MARKETING MANAGER
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE
I would like to let you know about an exciting scholarship opportunity for your budding photography students.
WorldNomads.com in conjunction with National Geographic Channel are offering one talented individual the chance to be mentored by National Geographic photographer, Jason Edwards, one of the world?s leading wildlife and remote landscape photographers. Continue reading “Would your students like to be mentored by a National Geographic photographer?”
The recent attacks on Buddhist monasteries in Ramu and the earlier torching of Hindu temples in Hathazari leave us devastated. The rage worldwide surrounding the production of the film “Innocence of Muslims” and the indisputable fact that Islamophobia is on the rise is no less a matter of concern. Salma had insisted that I peep into the exhibition ‘1001 Inventions’ while in Washington D.C. for the “All Roads” board meeting at the National Geographic Society. It was sobering to look at the role Islam has played in what was otherwise known as the ‘Dark Ages’. Since youtube is still blocked by our far-from-able gatekeepers, I’ve uploaded the video on vimeo. If only a fraction of our investment in technology, and in particular on war machines, was spent in teaching our children to become better human beings…
“1001 Inventions” The Enduring Legacy of Muslim Civilisation from Shahidul Alam on Vimeo.
Continue reading “1001 Inventions”
?Isn?t it a thrill to have him here in London? said the woman behind me to a friend as we we all waited, hardly an empty seat in the small lecture area of National Geographics?s Regent St first floor, and the next hour or so listening to Shahidul Alam talking, showing pictures and answering questions certainly justified her anticipation.
Probably most of us in the audience had some idea of the incredible transformation Dr Alam has made to the world of photography, not just in his native Bangladesh but worldwide, although so much still remains to be done, but I think all of us found there was even more to him – and his family – than we had been previously aware.
Alam?s mother in particular was a formidable woman; determined to get a university education despite the opposition of her mother-in-law to the education of women, she left home every morning in a burkha ?going to visit friends? and went to study. Armed with her degree she dedicated herself to the education of women, and having found little backing for her project, bought a tent and used it to set up her own school for girls.
Later too we heard that his father had dared to evade the ?invitation? sent to him along with the other leading intellectuals of the country to take tea with the occupying Pakistani generals in 1971 just a few days before the end of the war. It was a story accompanied by a picture by Rashid Talukdar of a severed head in rubble, from the killing fields of Rayerbazar. Altogether more than a thousand teachers, journalists, doctors, lawyers, artists, writers and engineers were massacred.
Continue reading “From the Lions Point Of View”
When the lions find their storytellers: A public talk by Dr Shahidul Alam
October 4th, 6 p.m.
National Geographic Store
83-97 Regent Street
Internationally renowned Bangladeshi photographer, writer, curator and teacher Dr Shahidul Alam, will lead a free public talk at the National Geographic Store next week.
During the 40 minute talk Dr Alam, a National Geographic juror and photographer, will discuss his 30 year career in documentary photography, as well as his role as one of the most respected photography educators in the world.
Dr Alam?s work in establishing networks for photography and media professionals in his native Bangladesh has opened up the medium to an entirely new generation of artists. As a result, Bangladesh now has the highest number of documentary photographers in the world, some of whom, thanks to his efforts, are becoming internationally acclaimed. Alam founded the award-winning Drik Picture Library (www.drik.net) in 1989; the Bangladesh Photographic Institute in 1990; Pathshala, the South Asian Institute of Photography – considered one of the finest schools of photography in the world – (www.pathshala.net) and ?Chobi Mela? (www.chobimela.org), a biennial international festival of photography, which is held in the capital, Dhaka. Alam’s most recent project is the founding of Majority World, a photo agency dedicated to providing a platform for non-Western photographers.
A jury member of numerous competitions including World Press Photo, for which he has been a judge on four occasions and recently the first non-Western person to chair the international jury, Alam was also the first Asian recipient of the prestigious Mother Jones Award for Documentary Photography. His work has been exhibited internationally, including: the MOMA, New York; the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Royal Albert Hall, London; and The Museum of Contemporary Arts, Tehran.
Dr Alam’s week-long visit to the UK is a result of his first retrospective photography exhibition at the Wilmotte Gallery at Lichfield Studios (http://www.tristanhoare.co.uk/) from 5th October -18 November, and the release of his forthcoming book, SHAHIDUL ALAM: My Journey as a Witness, published by Skira, Milan, and edited by Rosa Maria Falvo. The book will be launched at the Grand Hyatt Churchill Hotel in London at 5.30 pm.
Photograph by Tom?s Munita
The All Roads Photography Program will be exhibiting its 2010 photography awardees at?Chobi Mela VI, an international festival of photography. Chobi Mela VI opens January 21, 2011 in Bangladesh. This year?s theme is ?Dreams? and is considered the largest exhibition of photography in Asia. The festival is considered to have the most diverse participation of photography in the world. Now having gained an international reputation as one of the leading photography festivals in the world it features 63 exhibitions from 33 participating countries that span all seven continents of the globe. Chobi Mela is unique in having been developed and launched in South Asia.
Shahidul Alam, Chobi Mela festival director and All Roads photography advisory board member, explains the festival?s theme, ?As dream merchants, we [photographers] create images that confront us with horrific facts, and allure us with magical metaphors. We seek a society where love songs are cherished and curiosity celebrated. We conjure up a mystical world, through light and shape and dancing pixels. We toy with perceptions and juggle facts. We trade in the currency of dreams, and flirt with an elusive reality. So to turn to dreams after [past themes] ?Differences?, ?Exclusion?, ?Resistance?, ?Boundaries? and ?Freedom? is perhaps to return to what holds us together in the face of all our obstacles, the foci of all our longings. To realize our dreams is perhaps the ultimate paradise. So we invite dreamers and wanderers and the soulful troubadour, to ignite our imagination. To provoke and goad us out . . . to dream.?
The 2010 Photography Program Awardees Are:
Rashid Talukder (Bangladesh)
Pioneer Photographer Award
Photo essay ?The 1971 Liberation War?
Tom?s Munita (Chile)
Mid-career Photographer Award
Photo essay ?Lost Harvest?The Death of Loa River?
Sumit Dayal (Kashmir)
Emerging Photographer Award
Photo essay ?On Going Home?
View the 2010 All Roads Photography Gallery Here
The Photography Program recognizes and supports talented international storytellers whose still photography documents their changing cultures and communities. Each year four photographers are awarded a financial prize, and their photo essays are exhibited at the All Roads Film Festival and other venues. They also receive photographic accessories and, through workshops, get valuable training to assist in their fieldwork.
Candidates are nominated by an advisory board of leaders from the photography industry and representatives from National Geographic Society.
- Award recipients must be from an indigenous or minority culture within their countries of origin.
- Award recipients? work must document their changing cultures and community and represent a recent body of work (within the last two years).
- Potential recipients must be living in the countries that they are documenting.
- Awards are based on artistic merit in combination with the photojournalistic focus of the project.