The Alexia Foundation is pleased to announce that we have selected the recipients of our 2015 Grants. Paolo Marchetti has been awarded the 2015 Professional Grant. Michael Santiago has been named the 2015 Student Winner.
To show the brutality of the intensive breeding farms used to produce skins and furs for the fashion industry.
Finalists for the professional grant were Matt Eich, Charles Mendel, Ed Ou and Corinna Kern.
Marchetti of Rome, Italy, will utilize the $20,000 grant for his project “The Price of Vanity.” The work will document the brutality of the intensive breeding farms used worldwide to produce skins and furs for the high-end fashion industry. It intends to expose this cruel cultural trend driven by remorseless beauty demands.
Upon being notified by Mike Davis, Marchetti asked: “Are you serious? Are you joking?”
Once he was assured that the news was true, he said, “This is terrific news for me, this is incredible. I am so grateful to the judges.”
Michael Santiago was named the student winner for his project “Stolen Land, Stolen Future.” Santiago is a senior at the San Francisco Art Institute. His project will document the lives of black farmers, who have fought to acquire and maintain land throughout the country, despite facing extreme difficulty along the way.
As the student winner, Santiago will receive full tuition to study at the Syracuse University London Program, a $1,000 cash grant to help produce the proposed body of work, a $500 B&H Photo Gift Certificate, tuition to Foundry Photojournalism Workshop and $500 will be awarded to his academic department.
The student runner-up is Rahul Talukder from the Pathshala South Asian Media Institute in Dhaka, Bangladesh, for his project “Collapse of Rana Plaza,” which will follow the survivors of the Rana Plaza collapse and the dependents of those who died. Talukder will receive half tuition to study at the Syracuse University London Program, a $500 cash grant to help produce the proposed project, a $250 B&H Photo Gift Certificate and tuition to Foundry Photojournalism Workshop.
Kelly Creedon of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Md Shahnewaz Khan of The Photoart Institute in Chittagong, Bangladesh and Alcee Howard Walker of the School of the Visual Arts in New York were named Award of Excellence Recipients.
Creedon’s project “Being 15: Navigating Adolescence as a Young Black Male” will explore the complex challenges of young Black adolescents coming of age in America today through the lens of one young man.
Khan will examine child labor in Bangladesh in his project “Fallen Stars.”
In “Pain of Love,” Walker will continue his project documenting himself and his family, examining the pain and trauma hidden below the surface.
The Award of Excellence winners will receive $1,500 to be subtracted from the tuition for the SU London Program upon acceptance, or a Momenta Photo Workshop tuition, or a Kalish Workshop tuition provided by The Gilka Grant. They will also each receive a $500 cash grant for his or her proposed project and a $100 B&H Photo Gift Certificate.
Finally, Ata Ranjbar Zidanlo of Khabarnegaran College in Iran was honored with a Judge’s Special Recognition award for his project “Addiction of Women to Drugs in Iran.”
The judges for this year’s grant competition were Sarah Leen, Carlos Javiar Ortiz and Julia Dolan. Leen is the Director of Photography for National Geographic Magazine. Ortiz is an American documentary photographer and experimental filmmaker. Dolan is The Minor White Curator of Photography at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon.
Congratulations to all of the winners and thank you all for sharing with us your powerful proposals and moving images.