A very nice surprise to hear my images from the migration crisis in the Mediterranean is a Jurors’ Pick in the LensCulture ExposureAwards2018– Many thanks to Mazie Harris at the Department of Photographs Getty Museum for selecting my work, and many thanks to Jim and Millie Casper and the LensCulture team – and big congrats to all the all the other photographers! Jason Florio
The work will be exhibited at Somerset House during Photo London May 17-20, 2018
Jurors’ Picks/Lensculture Exposure Awards – Image © Jason Florio: Gambian and other West African migrants just rescued from a packed rubber boat off the coast of Libya huddle on the deck of Migrant Offshore Aid Station’s ship. In the background, their rubber boat is set ablaze to prevent smugglers, who were circling during the rescue, from taking the engine and boat back to Libya to use again
Jurors’ Picks – Each of the eight jury members selected one photographer to be awarded special distinction…with a brief quote from each juror explaining what they especially appreciate about these photographers and their work.
Mazie Harris – Assistant Curator of the Department of Photographs Getty Museum
‘Amidst ongoing debates over immigration and refugees, I found myself returning repeatedly to Jason Florio’s portfolio. Through thoughtful compositional choices, a careful selection… ‘read more on the Lensculture Exposure Awards – Winners & Finalists page
Huge congratulations to all the ‘Winners, Finalists and Jurors Picks’, including Eddo Hartmann (Netherlands), Giulio Di Sturco (UK), César Dezfuli (Spain) – check them all out at Lensculture.
Related Posts on migrant/refugee rescues:
The Guardian: Photojournalism series winner – Destination Europe
British photographer Jason Florio’s picture shows Gambian and other West African migrants lying exhausted on the deck of a rescue ship after being saved from a packed rubber boat that was starting to sink off the coast of Libya
9/11/2001 – A man walks alone in the debris of the South Tower, just a few minutes before the North Tower begins to fall, NYC © Jason Florio
‘These images (below) were made in part as a reaction to the much-bandied meme, “Never Forget” – which originally entered the lexicon, I am told, in relation to the Holocaust. It was appropriated years later on September 11th, 2001 and has become a mantra and a marketing tool for politicians and merchandisers alike.
As an adopted New Yorker I saw daily the stripping away of the physical memory of that day, but the visual echoes still resonated, spectral-like, monochrome. ‘ Jason Florio – read more here
9/11 Redux: A lone firefighter walks south on Broadway at Dey Street, in the debris of the South Tower, NYC – overlaid with same location 9.11.2011 © Jason Florio
9/11 Redux – Facing south on West Broadway next to WTC 7, just a few minutes before the collapse of World Trade Center South Tower (9.59am) – overlaid with the same location 9.11.2011 © Jason Florio
A Nigerian migrant pulled from a rubber boat prays on board the MOAS escue dingy. © Jason Florio/MOAS
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
An overloaded rubber boat is intercepted in rolling seas by the MOAS rescue team. © Jason Florio/MOAS
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
Jason Florio – onboard the MOAS Phoenix rescue boat with rescued migrants/refugees
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
Images © Jason Florio – read full feature/more images on-line at VQR
Left & middle – Syrian refugees, right, humanitarian translator, Mohammed Alshalh, Izmir, Turkey – Dec 2015. iPhone images © Jason Florio Instagram
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
Scene from the Car: On route from Chittagong to the fishing port of Cox’s Bazar, stuck in major traffic – as in, we aren’t getting anywhere fast. JF, Oct 26, 2015
Related blog: Photos Tell Stories – travel and documentary words and images