foto forum made their pick: the contemporary photography gallery based in Bozen, Italy that juried our most recently closed FotoRoomOPEN call have selected 50-year old German photographer Stefanie Minzenmay as the Series winner: brava, Stefanie! ? As the winner, Stefanie will exhibit her submitted project ‘Protected Privacy’ at foto forum in the upcoming months. (Did you know? We’re currently accepting submission for a new FotoRoomOPEN call, exceptionally open to women photographers only: enter your work and you may be picked up for representation by New York based, all-female photography agency ACN. Find out more and submit).
“We chose Stefanie Minzenmay’s project because it touches on relevant contemporary issues that aren’t often explored photographically, such as the influence of social media on younger people and the cost we pay to use the Internet in terms of privacy” foto forum says about choosing to exhibit Protected Privacy. “Besides this, we were convinced by her photographs’ strong yet elegant and delicate nature.” The work comprises a series of staged portraits about young people‘s relationship with social media. Stefanie introduces the work as follows: “Using the possibilities offered by the Internet and social networks comes easily and naturally to digital natives. At the same time, when using these media, they share personal information in exchange for securing their own participation; but that information is then recorded permanently on the web, and the authors lose any control over it.”
“Am I strong enough to not share anything?” is the question at the base of Stefanie’s project. Her goal in concealing her subjects’ faces was to “reduce the information that is usually transferred by a portrait: a recognizable location, the subject’s face, age, gender and so on.” In doing so, the images conceptualize the need to “disappear” from the online world as the only way to protect and retain control over one’s personal life.
Congratulations to Stefanie and many thanks to all the photographers who participated in the call! We’ve received many good submissions which we will share both here on the website and on our Instagram feed in the next days. Stay tuned.