The exhibition, which has been curated by Urs Stahel and set up in the Photo Gallery, presents the works of the five finalists of the Grant: Farah Al Qasimi, Hicham Gardaf, Lebohang Kganye, Maria Mavropoulou, and Salvatore Vitale.
These young photographers, selected from fifty-three candidates from all over the world, have developed an original and unpublished project which addresses the changes of the world of work.
In Praise of Slowness by Hicham Gardaf (Tangier, 1989), winner of the seventh edition of the Grant, is a tribute to slowness: the core theme is represented by the contrast between the prosperous, flourishing and expanding part of the city and the historic center with its ancient charm, the fresh shadow at the base of the walls that mark its perimeter, the slow and reflective pace of people and street vendors.
Lebohang Kganye (Johannesburg, 1990), author of a work that is not just photographic, proposes in the project Keep the Light Faithfully, narratives of great effect and depth for which she received the Jury’s Special Mention. In a sort of Chinese shadow theater, Lebohang Kganye stages moments of South African life that have as their protagonists, photographed characters whose silhouette is cut out and applied on cardboard, the settings enhanced by a skilled theatrical lighting.
In the project Red River Blues (Dearborn) Farah Al Qasimi (Abu Dhabi, 1991) focuses on the large Arab community of Dearborn, Michigan, the hometown of Henry Ford and the historical site of the Ford Motor Company, which shows a hybrid character and is an expression of two cultures, the Arab and the American.
Al Qasimi creates a kind of amalgam of views onto the real city and onto the city as it is photographed.
The work of Maria Mavropoulou (Athens, 1989) In their own image, in the image of God they created them uses artificial intelligence and in particular a text-to-image conversion software: thus, a multiplicity of images so suggestive as to ask us whether artificial intelligence will always be constrained to reality by photography, or if one day it will be able to create a more meaningful work of art independently.
Salvatore Vitale (Palermo, 1986) creates Death by GPS, a project that is radical in several respects: it evokes the atmospheres of a laboratory, a television studio and a place that has been the scene of disorders at the same time. The quick sequence montage juxtaposes documentary photographs of real events and staged sabotage videos, inviting the viewer to reflect on the incongruities of automation.
In addition, the exhibition also features the works of the twenty-four finalists of the previous editions, forming a large, multi-faceted exhibition, a sort of tour of the world through images, to celebrate both the tenth anniversary of MAST and the fifteen years of commitment to organizing the Grant for young photographers.