Friday, 2 March 2012

Alfonso Moral: Machine Man: 69th POYi

"Allah has said that a woman should behind 5 fences"

Alfonso Moral and Roser Corella were awarded POYi's First Place Award for Long Form Multimedia Story with their Machine Man, a documentary dealing with modernity and global development, with men (and women) as machines.

In Dhaka, Bangladesh, men and women undertake hard physical tasks with machine precision and routine: they load their bodies with heavy materials; they manufacture bricks; they separate plastics and they drive rickshaws. They are the machine men, a mass of millions of people who become the driving force for the city.

There's a lot of powerful work by a variety of photographers on POYi 69th which has announced its winners. However, I decided to feature the work of Alfonso Moral (photographer ) and Roser Corella (editor) on this blog, not only because Machine Man is a very well done documentary, but because they're freelance.

I might take some flak for this, but the photographers and photojournalists backed by powerful newspapers, magazines and other media such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Newsweek and the National Geographic getting awards have a considerable edge over others who don't enjoy this backing. It's therefore refreshing to see that POYi chose freelancers for this category.

Alfonso Moral is a Spanish photographer, who worked for a while with El Norte del Castiliano newspaper. He later moved to Syria and began focusing on the Middle East from where he covered Lebanon, Palestine and Iraq in addition to elections in Afganisthan and the Hezbollah movement in Southern Lebanon. Apart from winning a photojournalism grant for his work on the Palestinian refugees, his work was featured in El Pais and Newsweek amongst other publications. He is currently based in Barcelona.