Paolo Ventura, 1968, Italy, studied at the Accademia di Bella Arti di Brera in Milan and currently lives and works in New York. He envisioned scenes he wanted to photograph, but these situations could not be found anymore. Therefore he started to construct entire sets by hand. He creates miniature buildings, trees and other objects. At the same time he constructs all the figures himself, making tiny clothes for the little men and women that he uses as actors in his scenes to tell his narrative and magical stories. In 2006 he released his series War Souvenir as a monograph and in 2009 the book Winter Stories came out. In the last five years Paolo has exhibited extensively throughout the USA and Europe. The following images come from the series Civil War, Winter Stories and War Souvenir.
Lalla Essaydi, 1956, is a fine art photographer from Morocco. She received an MFA at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Besides photography she uses other media as painting, film and installations. Her art often contains islamic calligraphy in combination with the representation of the female body. She addresses the complex reality of the Arab female identity. She has looked at the western painting tradition, recreating the paintings in an orientalist setting. In Les Femmes du Maroc, all the props used, including the background and the clothes, are covered in caligraphy. The calligraphy is even on the bodies of the females with the use of henna. Essaydi has exhibited extensively, is represented by numerous galleries and her work is in private and public collections. The following images come from the series Les Femmes du Maroc and Harem.
Federico Cabrera, 1981, Argentina, is a fashion photographer and designer who works and lives in Helsinki. He left Argentina at age 18 and is based in Finland since 2005 and has been doing various projects ever since. In the last two years he has focused mainly on his own works amongst which is a project called Sect et Sept, building a conceptual fashion house, collaborating with other creatives and using fabrics and trash. The clothes featured in the shoots are build from scratch and they cannot be bought. Gilles et Dada is one of his other projects including photography and graphic design aswell as Who Said We Can’t, an online art gallery for young upcoming photographers. He “cut and pastes” within his pictures creating bizarre and fantastical effects. The following images come from The Emperors Black Rose, We Will All Burn / Sect et Sept and The Infamous Infant Prodigy / GD.
Anna Skladmann, 1986, Germany, is a young documentary photographer who lives and works between New York and Moscow. She focused on several projects in Russia. Recently her book Little Adults was released, a collection of portraits of priviliged children in Russia. These Russian kids belong to the “nouveau riche” and grow up surrounded by money. They are considered to become the next elite class of the post-communist country, putting pressure on them to become achievers. In a country where the gap between rich and poor is so large, it starts to raise questions about the notion of normality. Anna photographed the children that behave like little adults in their own surroundings and clothes. The following images come from her personal series Little Adults, Sochi and Portraits.