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IMP FESTIVAL – International Month Of Photojournalism 2021 in Padova

April 28, 2021

Prospekt is pleased to be once again partner of IMP – International Photojournalism Festival which returns to Padua after the first successful edition of 2019.

The 2021 edition, which will take place from 4 to 27 June, directed by Riccardo Bononi, will be further extended both in terms of duration and content: 30 international authors will guide the public in the exhibitions set up in the most prestigious museums and exhibitions in the city, in addition to which will be added other exhibition events, workshops, over 30 talks and conferences.

Prospekt will take part to the Festival with two exhibitions of its authors, “Cosmodrome” by Raffaele Petralla, “Japan Pom Pom & Other Stories” by Laura Liverani and with a workshop focused on photographic editing that Francesco Merlini will hold together with the photo editor of D La Repubblica, Manila Camarini.


“Japan Pom Pom & Other Stories”
by Laura Liverani

Elderly cheerleaders, a school for senior models, women sumo wrestlers; Tobi construction workers, Fukushima surfers and full-body spandex suit enthusiasts. Six separate series portray different communities of contemporary Japan. The women and men of every community portrayed, however distant from one another, all share a strong sense of group identity. An identity that is chosen and actively performed in daily life practices.
Senior models and cheerleaders both stand against age stereotypes that prescribe older women to wear only what is considered appropriate for their age, while the female sumo wrestlers challenge dominant ideas of femininity and gender roles. On the other hand the Tobi-shokunin, the specialised construction workers with a distinctive cool style, reinforce cliches of masculinity within a traditionally closed and proud community that dates back to the Edo period. Wearing spandex is not only a matter of style for the more recent Zentai subculture: feeling ‘invisible’ is one of the reported effects of tight lycra covering your face and body. By granting anonymity, a spandex costume can ease the pressure to conform to the strict rules of Japanese society. The Zentai’s chosen identity is somehow a non- identity. The last and most recent chapter is dedicated to the surfers community in Fukushima, whose beaches recently regained their popularity as the best surfing spots in Japan.


by Raffaele Petralla

Restricted military area of Mezen. 300 km from Arkhangelsk and a few kilometers from Polar Circle.
In this hostile territory, where environmental and climatic factors make everyday life hard and strenuous, computing errors in the trajectories of satellites from Plesetsk’s Cosmodrome become an unexpected resource. About 1500 km North of the launch base, between forests and tundra, there is a populated area of about ten villages. The inhabitants of this area, who base their own survival on hunting and fishing, are used to build daily life objects – mostly sledges and boats called with the collected fragments of space rockets. They even make illegal business of the internal components as gold and titanium. Recovery operations take place during the winter, in which the river beds freeze and make roads more easily passable with sleds and cars.
Before the collapse of the Soviet Union, the most important space base was Bajkonour, now belonging to independent Kazakhstan: after the second half of the ‘90s, Russia has increased the launches from the Plesetsk base to avoid paying the rent to Kazakhstan. For many years this spaceport was kept secret. Only in 1983, the Cosmodrome was officially mentioned for the first time in the national press of the USSR.
From Plesetsk, many of the navigation satellites, the weather satellites, and the majority of the military satellites are launched for a wide range of purposes. Since 1997, more than 1,500 launches took off from this site. At launch, each satellite is supported by four propulsion rockets that, disengaging when it reaches orbit, finally fall on earth: according to the official trajectories, fragments should land in the Arctic regions because poorly populated. ln many cases, however, they affect the most populated areas in the South.
A highly toxic chemical compound called Unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine is used as a propellant. According to the local testimonies, many cases of cancer are occurring in the area.


“Photo Editing and Editorial Design”
with Francesco Merlini and Manila Camarini

Manila Camarini, photo editor of the weekly magazine D La Repubblica, and Francesco Merlini, photo editor and photographer of the Prospekt Photographers agency, will deal with the theme of photo editing aimed at the editorial proposal. During the workshop, the process of selecting the images and the preparation of the photographic and textual material that makes up a photographic reportage will be treated with particular attention.

Sunday 6th June 2021

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