Biography

Angela Varricchio photographer

Angela Varricchio was born in Benevento, Italy, in 1979. In 2003 she took a Full Honours Degree in Science of Communication at the University of Studies of Salerno in Italy, expounding an original thesis in Poetics and Rhetoric about the visual mechanisms of photographic body persuasion of UNHCR, Doctors Without Borders, Amnesty International, UNICEF, and FAO social photographies campaigns.

After a Post-degree specialization in Media Content Product Management, in 2005 she completed a Post-degree specialization in Photojournalism at Istituto Superiore di Fotografia e Comunicazione Integrata (I.S.F.C.I.), in Rome. During her studies, Angela attended workshops with Antoine D’Agata, Francesco Zizola, Patrick Zachmann, Angelo Turetta, Letizia Battaglia, and Franco Zecchin, as well as workshops with Lina Pallotta and Morten Andersen. Since 2007 Angela has been working as a freelance photojournalist and then as a multimedia journalist. From 2011 to 2012 she had been teaching photography and reportage.

In 2017 Angela took a Master Degree of Arts in Photojournalism at Mid Sweden University, in Sweden.

In 2018 she started a PhD in Media and Cultural Studies at Lancaster University in England. Her study focuses on the diametrically opposite difference between Vietnam War photographies (as an example of free photojournalism), provoking the American anti-war movement birth, and First Gulf War images (as an example of embedded photojournalism), which as a part of the so-called “Video game War” aesthetic, caused zero impact on audience. The aim of the research is exploring in depth the relationship between the iconicity of war images and the pictorial representations of Western myths.

Awards/Grants

– Ascanio Ciriello. Italy. 2006. First prize.
– Orvieto Fotografia Professional Photography Awards. Italy. 2008. Bronze award in “Reportage” category.
– Orvieto Fotografia Professional Photography Awards. Italy. 2009. Bronze award in “Reportage” and “Open Photography” category.
– Premio fotografico 2009 Tau Visual. Italy. 2009. Honourable mention in “Travel and Ethnic” category.
– National Geographic Italian Contest, web gallery. Italy. 2010. Finalist.
– Intimalens Ethnographic Film Festival. Italy. 2012. Second place in Photography” category.
– Leica Italia Award Contest. Italy. 2013. Finalist.
– Fiof Awards Nikon Photo Contest. Italy. 2014. Bronze award in “Reportage” and  “Storytelling” category.
– Wide Foundation Documentary Photography Award. Sweden. 2015. Finalist.
– Fiof Awards. Fiipa. Italy. 2016. Second place in Story” category.
– Magnum Photography Awards 2016. 2016. Selected in “Street photography” category.
– Siena International Photo Award. 2016. Selected in “Storyboard” category.

– Monochrome Award. 2016. Honorable mention in “People” category.
– Lensculture Photo Contest. 2016. Selected in “Street photography” category. 
– Aspa -Alghero Street Photography Awards- . 2018. Finalist in “Travel” category.

Exhibitions

– Scatti divini. Group exhibition. Firenze, Italy. 2007.
– Exposure: 4th Annual Photography Competition. Group exhibition. New York, USA. 2013.
– Intimalens Ethnographic Film Festival. Group exhibition. Caserta, Italy. 2012 /2013.
Views from the North. Group exhibition. Sundsvall, Sweden. 2016.

Photojournalist statement

   In the introduction of War images, published by Medics Without Borders in 2001, a Radio France Inter journalist, Daniel Mermet, explains: “A reporter belongs to the pataphysical comedy. He believes to ride free around the four angles of the earth, but he is only a dog harnessed by his leash and the old cunning of the global powers, a puppet entangled in his barbed wired, knife’s edge, Ariadne’s thread, or rope around the neck. He is manipulated by himself, by the adolescent who lives inside him, Capa in Spain, Caron in Vietnam. At the bottom of his heart, hidden in the darkroom of his memories, there are two or three images which before shaking up the world shook up his world”.

    I was seventeen years old and I was browsing randomly the book of Contemporary History, subject about which I was passionate, when I found a series of Margaret Bourke-White’s black and white photographs of Buchenwald prisoners, a Goya’s print from Disasters of War, and a German soldier’s photograph portraying a Jewish young woman forced to wear a sign with the written “I am a bitch”. Those three images shocked me. The indignation at the human rights violation, the racial hate, and the brutality of war pushed me to become a photojournalist and a multimedia journalist, to lend the voice of each form of silent and oppressed alive beings by a camera.

    Photojournalism is a cultural tool to attract public opinion’s attention on features out of the majority of media agenda because of the economic interests of lobbies and stakeholders. The increasing power of lobbies in hiding or distorting reality has caused the crisis of independent publishing companies, with a slow and progressive narcotisation of public audience. As a consequence, the birth of an alarming ignorance or acquiescence about sensitive features has caused a lack of engagement in defending civil and human rights.

Documentary is an ethical and civil revolution, fought through the acculturation process of public audience. It is a precious mean of explanation of the historic and political motivations from which a daily news originates. At the beginning of 20th-century, by humanist photography´s soulful eyes transvestites, drunks, bohemians and working class ceased being amorphous misfits, waste at the margins of society, as the conformist bourgeois thought established, and started to be considered human beings to be supported by an organized social welfare.

   Following the same fil rouge in the contemporary era, by the use of a vast range of platform,media, and format and fighting against the overcomes of photojournalism classic form crisis, multimedia journalism has to adapt to new challenges, detecting the economic system contradictions, functioning as a guardian of democracy. As an educated and politically engaged storyteller, multimedia journalist must be pungent and incisive to shape an alternative form of active intelligencija. He must not only reporting visually facts as an exercise of duty of information, but also use a plethora of content and media as tools of civil mobilisation, to raise questions about new forms of inequities.