LensCulture: I would imagine that meeting your Gambian friend’s son must have been one of the most touching moments for you. How did you react? Did you call his family together?
Jason Florio: On a number of occasions, I met rescued Gambians on the MOAS ship and then quickly realized that we had friends and acquaintances in common back in The Gambia. But I was utterly floored when on two occasions I met young Gambian teenagers whose fathers I knew directly. I had photographed the father of one boy, Abdoulie, for an earlier project seventeen years prior… Read the full interview on the LensCulture site
See more from Florio’s Magnum Photography Awards 2017 Photojournalism Series Winner, ‘Destination Europe‘ at floriophoto.com
Follow @jasonflorio / Instagram
‘For the past two years (2015-16), I was embedded with the first search and rescue NGO, MOAS (Migrant Offshore Aid Station) to operate rescue ships, specifically to save the lives of migrants and refugees attempting to cross the Mediterranean and Aegean seas.’ JF
Visit the Lensculture site (or click on the above image to share on FB) to view Jason Florio’s full entry of images.
Related posts here
In doing so, with more than 100 subjects, Florio has created a humanizing counterpoint to the images that have dominated the narrative of the migration crisis so far. “I know it sounds cliché, but I felt these portraits were an effective way to find the individual in the whole mess. All the images of migrants we’ve seen are of chaotic hordes. I thought it was important to give them a space to represent themselves.” VQR – read full feature and see more portraits and rescue images here
The last couple of months has seen me travelling, on fact-finding missions about refugees, for Migrant Report and MOAS, in Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Turkey. Next week, I get back on board with MOAS_EU, on their new mission to the Aegean Sea, to document the refugee rescues at sea, off the coast of Greece.
More news coming soon