The jury met on November 28, 2013 in Berlin and after a long and thorough discussion accompanied by multiple cups of tea and coffee agreed on a verdict. The decision was not easy as there were fifty-nine submissions we had to analyze and discuss. A huge thank you to all participants!
The SECOND HOME photography contest award goes to Jean-Paul Pastor Guzmán for his contribution entitled “Hello Crisis!”
The submitted sequence consisting of five photographs is a part of a larger work conducted as a BA diploma project in Communication Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Aachen, Germany. The series portrays young people from the south of Europe who facing the economic crisis in their home countries decide to move to Berlin in search for a better future and a better life. The photographs reflect their attempts at making Berlin a second home and prove this process to be highly ambiguous. In the five photographs Guzmán manages to portray both: individuals and their respective cosmoses. Looking for a second home in a foreign environment can become a great chance but it also is a difficult challenge which can lead to personal disillusionments. It can also result in disappointments with the EU which at times reminds of an exhausted balloon that lost too much air.
The jury was convinced with the way the sequence of portraits and still life showed the extraordinariness of the circumstances. It did so with expertise and emotional engagement. Clear and precisely worked on in detail – the choice of technique and composition contribute to telling the story of doubts and longing connected to the experience of migration. “Hello Crisis!” is about proximity and remoteness, affection, needs and desires.
Guzmán’s photography shows not only the fragility of people but also and equally importantly, the fragility of the notion of home. A home can be easily abandoned but it is everything but easy to replace it. A home once left is a place one cannot return to or reclaim, as the perception of it changes while being away.
“Hello Crisis!” will be exhibited in Berlin in BetaHaus and Centre Marc Bloch together with photos of seven other competition participants chosen by the jury. The chosen submissions are
We thank everyone for participating and sharing their thoughts on the phenomenon of contemporary economic migration among young people! We very much appreciate your input to the discussion and are very happy that the topic gained such a wide attention internationally.
Read the interview with the winner here!