Lorenzo Meloni is known for his searing, artfully drawn photography covering conflicts in the Middle East. Though he is often working on the frontline—he has covered some of the most pivotal battles in the war against the Islamic State—he is also concerned with deeper themes, such as history and post-colonialism. In 2011, he finished his photography studies and immediately joined Contrasto, a major Italian photographic agency. He lived in Beirut from 2012 to 2014 and dedicated himself to long-term projects regarding the aftermath of the fall of Gaddafi in Libya, the conflict in Syria (specifically the area of Rojava) and its impact in Lebanon, between 2014 to 2016. His work currently focuses on the consequences of the Sykes-Picot agreement and the military and political intervention of the West in the Middle East. Meloni’s work has been exhibited in festivals worldwide including the Venice Biennale, Visa pour L’Image, Les Rencontres d’Arles, Boutographies and Fotoleggendo and has been featured in global publications including The Telegraph, TIME, Le Figaro, Vanity Fair, Internazionale, L’Espresso, La Repubblica. Meloni joined Magnum Photos as a nominee member in 2015.
Cristina de Middel investigates photography’s ambiguous relationship to truth. Blending documentary and conceptual photographic practices, she plays with reconstructions and archetypes in order to build a more layered understanding of the subjects she approaches. Working from the premise that mass media is reducing our real understanding of the world we live in, De Middel responds to an urgency to re-imagine tired aesthetic tropes and insert opinion in place of facts. Her impulse for an unconventional angle developed after a 10-year career as a photojournalist when De Middel stepped outside of straight documentary and produced the acclaimed series The Afronauts (2012). It explored the history of a failed space program in Zambia in the 1960s through staged reenactments of obscure narratives, challenging the traditional depiction of the African continent. De Middel’s ongoing project Gentleman’s Club (which began in Rio de Janeiro in 2015 and has now expanded to every continent around the globe bar Australasia) focuses on prostitution’s less documented side: the male clients. Her intimate portraits of these men subvert the paradigms of the status quo to provide new sources of insight and understanding. As well as her acclaimed personal projects, De Middel has worked on commission for clients including The Nobel Peace Foundation, Christian Dior, Vanity Fair USA, Vogue USA and FC Barcelona. De Middel was born in Spain and is based between Mexico and Brazil.
Sabiha Çimen was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1986. She is a self-taught photographer, focusing on women, Islamic culture, portraiture and still life. Çimen graduated from Istanbul Bilgi University with an undergraduate degree in International Trade and Finance, and a Masters degree in Cultural Studies. Her Master’s thesis on subaltern studies, which includes her photo story titled ‘Turkey as a Simulated Country’, was published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in 2019.
Yael Martínez’s work addresses fractured communities in his native Mexico. He often works symbolically to evoke a sense of emptiness, absence, and pain suffered by those affected by organized crime in the region. He is the recipient of the Eugene Smith Award 2019, was fellow of the Photography and Social Justice Program of The Magnum Foundation. He won the 2nd Prize of the World Press Photo contests 2019 in the category of long-term projects. Martínez was grantee of the Magnum Foundation in the grants: Emergency Fund and On Religion in 2016- 2017. His work has been featured in group shows in America, Europe, Africa and Asia. His work has been published by: The Wall Street Journal,Blomberg news, Lens NY times, Time, Vogue Italy, Vrij Nederland, Aperture. Martínez became a Magnum Nominee member in 2020.
Sonia Jeunet is the Education Manager at Magnum Photos where she oversees the organisation of photography workshops. Since joining Magnum in May 2018, she has produced more than 20 workshops in the UK and abroad. She has worked with leading industry professionals and institutions and has engaged with more than 300 emerging photographers. Together with Johanna Lacey at Create Jobs, she has designed and successfully delivered the Creativity Works course for the past three years, a free 6-week photography programme for emerging photographers in London. Sonia has more than 12 years’ experience working in the photography industry. Prior to Magnum, she worked as photo editor and creative producer for Panos Pictures (London) and NOOR (Amsterdam).