THIRD WEEK OF ITALIAN CUISINE IN THE WORLD
Food is an essential part of people’s lives, and as such is much more than nourishment. It is also the main factor in how we view others and ourselves. Eating and cooking are part of the culture of a country, reflecting its history and beliefs.
On the occasion of the Third Week of Italian Cuisine in the World, Francesco Cito, one of Italy’s most acclaimed reporters, presents Barche, Pescatori e pesci, his new exhibition about the world of fishing in the Italian region of Puglia and its centennial traditions.
For the exhibition opening, Francesco Cito will join a conversation about the role of photography in preserving intangible heritage and traditions with Robert W. Meins, Executive Director of the Lightscape Foundation, and Renee Braden and Sara Manco, respectively Senior Director of the Library & Archives and Senior Photo Archivist at National Geographic.
Embassy of Italy
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Francesco Cito is one of the most celebrated reporters in the world, with a long career working for Italian and foreign newspapers including La Repubblica, L’Espresso, Life, The Independent and Stern. In 1980, after the Soviet invasion, he was one of the first photographers to secretly reach Afghanistan, travelling 1200 km on foot with various groups of guerillas. At various stages from 1983 to 1989 he was on the Lebanese front as a correspondent from Epoca magazine.
He was awarded twice the prestigious International World Press Photo Prize for Neapolitan Weddings (1996) and The Siena Palio (1996), the Werner Bischof Prize (2005) and the Bari PhotoCamera Award (2007). He is internationally known for his war reportages in Afghanistan, Lebanon and Palestine, his work on camorra in Naples and more recently for his work on Sardinia and Apulia.
Robert W. Meins is the Executive Director of the Lightscape Foundation.
A development economist by profession, Robert’s work has impressed upon him the profound importance of photo- and video- journalism in communicating complex issues through simple imagery.
In the aftermath of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq Robert created a foundation in the Netherlands dedicated to using photojournalism to bring people together to discuss current-events issues from around the world. Using the powerful World Press Photo exhibition to illustrate the shades of grey that are inherent in international affairs, the foundation stimulated informed debate and civil discourse. The foundation celebrates its fifteenth year this month having welcomed over 100,000 visitors to World Press Photo exhibitions in the Netherlands.
Last year a similar feeling of increasing polarization inspired the creation of the Lightscape Foundation in collaboration with a group of Washington’s leading think-tanks, embassies, universities, media and civil society organizations.
Robert has a deep appreciation for Italy having worked in Rome for the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development. During that time he collaborated closely with Italian videographer Simone Camilli to highlight IFAD’s work with rural people in Sri Lanka and the Philippines. Simone’s untimely death in 2014 inspires the foundation’s work to highlight the sacrifices made by photojournalists to bring us the images that open our hearts and minds.
Before joining IFAD, Robert was a remittances specialist with the Inter-American Development Bank. Robert currently serves on the board of the Rotary Club of Washington DC.
Renee Braden is the Senior Director of the Library & Archives at the National Geographic Society. She has been with National Geographic for more than 30 years, and she is responsible for the administration and day-to-day operations of the staff, services, collections, products, and other activities of these areas. Renee works on a variety of editorial content and special projects, gives heritage tours & talks, and does original historical research, interpretation and analysis of the collections.
National Geographic Senior Photo Archivist Sara Manco hails from Kansas City, where she first picked up her dad’s barely used 35mm Minolta camera at 14 years old. Manco currently works at the National Geographic Society where she cares for its historic photographic collection. Manco also works with National Geographic’s Photo Camp, where she shares her love of photography and history with students around the world.
FIOF (Fondo Internazionale per la Fotografia, International Fund for Photography) is an Italian association founded in 2004 and whose mission is to discover and develop new talents, promote Italian photographers and photographic culture. Amongst numerous initiatives, FIOF organize competitions such as the FIIPA, (awards.fiof.it) a public contest open to professional photographers, amateurs and students all over the world.