“I see myself as a story tellers through the images. I’m not interested in speculating with the images, but interrogate continuously through them. The most significant stories for me, are those ones that speaking of human relationships overcoming adverse contexts”
My name is Constanza Portnoy, I was born in the 80’s in Buenos Aires, Argentina. During those years, my country went through a horrible military dictatorship. For that reason, I feel that I am part of a generation marked by the permanent search for identity and struggle for human rights.
At age 23, I graduated with honors in Psychology from the University of Buenos Aires.
I started working as a Psychologist in the area of disabilities. I specialized in this field with my postgraduate studies and worked in neuropsychiatric rehabilitation hospitals assisting elderly people and young children with diagnoses such as childhood schizophrenia, psychosis and severe autism.
I soon discovered the shortfalls in the lives of these people and that the daily violation of their rights had become something accepted. The problems that began to concern me, were the abandonment of the family as a social or institutional nucleus, the lack of public health policies, and the lack of compliance with disability laws.
At the same time, I started researching Art therapy resources to promote a better quality of life and that’s when Photography crossed my path.
I felt a deep love for that world that led me to discover a very powerful tool.
From those first moments, there was also a very important change for me, because I began to feel the need to use photography not only as an art therapy tool but also as a possibility to visually communicate popular voices and claims.
In my deep down, I felt the need to explore photojournalism and then I began taking classes, workshops, tutorials, reading material.
For several years, I absorbed everything that was within my reach to deepen both the conceptual and the photographic practice and once I felt qualified I began to collaborate with independent and self-managed media. I photographed the struggles and social resistance in the streets of my country along with the different manifestations and demands of the most oppressed sectors.
But I needed to guide my practice towards a theme that would allow me to do research deeply, fully, and extensively and there I found the place that finally made me completely passionate: Documentary photography.
I am currently working on my Thesis of research, where I articulate Psychology and Documentary photograph, addressing the psycho-social impact and the recovery capacity of human beings in front of certain events with traumatic potential.
In this sense, I am interested in deepening the construction of family bonds and love relationships that have a positive impact on the lives of those affected. Especially I emphasize in those minority sectors that fight for their denied rights.
I have published my work as a Photographer in various Argentine media outlets mainstream and independent. I have also published for International platforms works as a correspondent on the struggles for the rights of women and social resistances.
From the recent movement for the struggle for women’s rights «Ni una menos» to the struggle movements and salaried workers.
I participated in individual Exhibitions and collective Exhibitions Internationally and Nationally.
My photographs have been exhibited in Buenos Aires, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Italy, Vienna, Greece, Dubai, Riyadh, Sidón, Beirut, Chittagong, Paris, Toulouse, Marseille, New Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Johannesburg, Casablanca, Nigeria, Tokyo and New York City.
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-You must have a very deep affinity with the cause and subject you are trying to photograph. Without that, it is very difficult to take photographs with respect and gain people´s trust-
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Cover photo by: Alfredo Matilla (ES)