Transcending the Pain of Others: Beyond the World Press Photo

Alicia Blazquez

Abstract


The World Press Photo exhibition brings together, every year during the last eleven, the more representative set of photojournalism of the previous year. The collection of the winners in each edition represents, if one so wishes, an opportunity to reflect on the impact of the images in the public observer, beyond the aesthetic judgment in a particular time and space. This article aims to leave an open window to reflection. An approach on how snapshots shown are supported by three points: the photographer, the spectator and the surrounding social context. A triangle that inevitably possesses a constant ethical conflict: the duty between informing or helping, being anesthetized through the “compassion fatigue” or go beyond the initial discomfort when observing the pain of others and react against it. Human frailty observed as a driver or a deterrent of a broader social action; beyond the photographer, beyond the visit to an exhibition.ext of the abstract.  


Keywords


photojournalism, exhibition, observer, pain, action



DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17583/brac.2016.2031

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