Claudia Leisinger - Photography


Based in London since 2002, I spent my early childhood in India and Bhutan, before returning to my native Switzerland in 1980.

I completed an MA course in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography at the London College of Communication in 2007. My final project "The Changes Within: Bhutan Between Monarchy and Democracy" was a story documenting Bhutan's shift towards its first-ever democratic elections. It was later published in the NZZ (Neue Zuercher Zeitung).

I am especially drawn to subjects of migration, employment and environment; to stories and situations of imminent change. Looking at ordinary people, institutions and geographical areas on the cusp of events that, though sometimes appear subtle, can often have huge and wide-ranging effects on their lives or status.

“The Last of the Billingsgate Fish Porters” documented how 150 men lost their much-loved jobs when the City of London Corporation enforced the removal of a centuries-old tradition to ultimately increase profits. The bigger story is the loss of working-class manual labour and the attached communities all across Europe and the effects this has on our society.

My multimedia piece on the Billingsgate Porters was published in the Guardian UK, shown at Night Contact, London’s first Multimedia Festival as well as published on Foto8. It was exhibited in a solo exhibition at the Maz Galerie in Luzern, Switzerland and I won several awards for this body of work.

My current project “Of Flying Rivers & Flooded Lands: Damming the Amazon” examines the situation of two communities threatened by the Brazilian government’s plans to build a massive hydro-electricity dam in the middle of pristine Amazonian rainforest. This would completely submerge the self-sufficient fishing village of Pimental and Sawré Muybu, an indigenous village considered sacred by the Munduruku Indians, to whom the land legally belongs. I intend to use the resulting multimedia piece to campaign on behalf of the affected communities.

Alongside these projects I work as freelance photographer and filmmaker for magazines (The Telegraph Magazine, The Big Issue) charities (Red Cross, Lead International, Mentor, B.HUG, Tourettes Action) institutions (Chatham House, BMW-Foundation) and artists (Peter Leisinger, Sonja Knapp, Nicola Zaric).

Photography offers me the means to still my insatiable curiosity about the world around me and helps me to make sense of it. My hope is to communicate and share these feelings and experiences through my work.

(October 2015)

Facebook: ClaudiaLeisingerPhotography
Tel: +44 7768547700
Twitter: @CLeisinger

(credit @Thomas Ball)

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