My name is Miguel Ángel Sánchez, I’m a Studio portrait photographer based in Istanbul. This year, I want to continue working in a project entitled “The Will of Existing”.
I travel around the world looking for people and groups of population who are struggling to survive. I focus on people who are fighting to maintain their dignity, their essence, their culture and their roots and whose very existence is threatened due to religious, political or social reasons. I have explored various countries around the world and now I want to focus my camera in women from Congo. I have selected a place in East Congo, Kivu Region, where I found a center for refugees and victims of gender violence.
“In South Kivu, sexual violence is pervasive, affecting women of all ages, ethnicities and marital statuses. Women are attacked everywhere, even in the privacy of their own homes. The sexual assaults are ruthless, with horrific reports of gang rape, sexual slavery, genital trauma, forced rape between victims and rape in the presence of family members. Sexual violence survivors often witness the torture and murder of their children and spouses”
-A Report by the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative With Support from Oxfam America
I want to describe their particular “will of existing” through 30 portraits and scenes, through the characters and through my personal way of lighting. I am going to work with Nuria Tesón, a Spanish writer, who will portray by writing, a story about each woman. We worked together in Egypt during 5 years, since 2009 and we published a book about Egypt: “The Soul of the World”, a portrait of Egypt through their people, before, during and after the revolution.
As a studio photographer, production is always complicated. We are in contact with NGOs to facilitate all steps, such as finding a translator and a place for working.
Funds raised will go towards the flight to Congo with all the equipment [8 suitcases with cameras, tripods, lighting, panels], payment for a translator and pay the working space [we need a space, big enough to set the studio during 6 or 8 weeks].
Please visit my website to find pieces of my work from different countries, including publications, exhibitions and media links where I talk about my work.
This campaign is a fixed campaign– The campaign creator only collects funds pledged if it reaches its stated funding goal.