We can't close our eyes for everything, right?

Groningen – Nothing but shocking images at the World Press Photo (WPP) exhibition. Or is there more to it? I interviewed six visitors to the exhibition and searched it out.

By talent journalism Ayla Elzinga

Yugin (left) & B’lana (right)

Which photo really stands out for you?

Yugin: “That photo at the very front, of that crying girl. Often in photos, you feel disconnected from the photo. There is no direct connection between you and what is happening in the photo. But when I look at that photo, it feels like I’m really there. I think that’s mainly because the photo doesn’t feel posed.”

 When I look at that photo, it feels like I’m really there.

B’lana: “I think the photo series about Venezuela is very impressive. We used to live on Bonaire, very close to Venezuela. I always hear stories from my family there, but images still provide more information. Then you better understand what the situation really is like.”

Yugin en B'lana worden geïnterviewd tijdens de World Press Photo Exhibition 2019. Foto: Sebastiaan Rodenhuis

Hans

What is your first impression of this year’s WPP exhibition?

“It is partly also reminiscent, because you get photos from the newspaper back for a year. I did see some of those photos in the news. But then again, I also missed some photos . For example, those pictures of the bombing in Afghanistan, amazing. That doesn’t make you happy. Anyway, there are also very beautiful artistic photos. Like those jellyfish back here. I think it is beautiful. ”

Those pictures of that bombing in Afghanistan don’t make you happy.

So many impressive photos. Then if you could choose one photo that impresses you most, which one would you choose?

“Well, in a negative sense, the photo of the bombing. Because between those limbs a head of someone who survived just stands up. And in the artistic field, that jellyfish so far. It depends on how you look at it. I mean: with a different criterion, a different picture comes out. ”

Hans wordt geïnterviewd tijdens de World Press Photo Exhibition in de Synagoge in Groningen.

Sergey

Did you come here from an interest in photography or what is going on in the world?

“Well both actually. Of course, photos tell a certain story. In addition, I also ended up here because of the second point you made; from an interest in what is happening in the world. I also think it is important that reliable stories are told and that is what World Press Photo stands for.”

There are no interests behind these photos.

What do you think is the importance of the World Press Photo exhibition?

“Ehmm… Good question. Well, I think it is important that there are many different stories told around the world.”

But can’t you just read it in the newspaper?

“Yes you can, but I think World Press Photo really stands for reliable stories and well, you don’t know from every newspaper what is reliable or not. And especially now in the time of social media, where you see all kinds of things on Facebook. You never really know what importance is behind something. I like that about the World Press Photo exhibition; I think there are no interests behind these photos.”

Sergey wordt geïnterviewd tijdens de World Press Photo Exhibition in de Synagoge in Groningen.

Liesbeth

What do you think of the first prize winner, “Crying Girl on the Border”, have you seen it yet?

“I haven’t seen it yet. Yes, I have already seen it in miniature, so I will save it for last. I saw it from the corner of my eye, I think: I’ll get it later”

I think: I’ll take that photo later.

What were your expectations for this year’s exhibition?

“I don’t really have any expectations. I do know that the photos can often be very upsetting. Normally I always want to go with a friend, but she didn’t want to go to the World Press Photo exhibition for this reason. Because the images are often too confrontational. I think that’s so beautiful. Making people aware of things. Yes, we can’t close our eyes to everything, can we?”

Liesbeth wordt geïnterviewd tijdens de World Press Photo Exhibition in de Synagoge in Groningen.

Jethro

What is your first impression of the exhibition?

“I always look for a moment ‘oh, where is the place with the bloody photos and where are the normal photos’. Those “normal photos”, those are the artistic photos without violence. I think that images with corpses and blood are a bit easy to attract attention. I am more looking for photos with a story and contrast.”

I read that somewhere in a headline on NU.nl

What do you think is the importance of the WPP exhibition?

“Most young people nowadays hardly read any newspapers. For example, they are focused on their tablets and what is going on in their own environment. I think it is important that people can delve into the case at the World Press Photo exhibition; why this photo? Most people don’t really know what the news really is. I think that’s such a shame. I mean, if I have a discussion with someone on the street, they’ve already made their judgment. Then I say: “Where did you get that?” “Yes,” they answer, “I read that in a headline somewhere on nu.nl.”

Jethro wordt geïnterviewd tijdens de World Press Photo Exhibition in de Synagoge in Groningen.

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