National Press Club

Club members' photo exhibit to have opening reception Friday

September 3, 2019 | By Alan Kotok | alankotok@gmail.com

Special Air Mission 41, an image that appears in the National Press Club's 20th annual members' photo exhibit.

Special Air Mission 41, an image that appears in the National Press Club's 20th annual members' photo exhibit.

Photo/Image: Andrew Schneider

The opening reception of the National Press Club's 20th annual members' photo exhibit will take place beginning at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 6, in the First Amendment Lounge.

Two of the entrants use print photos and electronic images to tell their stories about the Syrian civil war.

The exhibit displays images and print photos by Flavius Mihaies who documents his visits to Damascus, Homs, and the Kurdish-controlled region in northwest Syria in 2015, and earlier volunteer work in refugee camps in Iraq. Yet there was a thriving and peaceful Syria before the war, which Molly McCartney describes in her print photos and images from 2010, including an image from Palmyra, a community with ancient ruins later largely desroyed by the Islamic State.

This year's exhibit offers 37 print photos and 130 electronic images from 42 Club members. For the first time, the exhibit has an online catalog, where photographers tell more about their photos and images, including stories by Mihaies and McCartney describing their entries about Syria. The catalog also provides links to related work by participants, including blog posts by Mihaies for the World Bank and Atlantic Council, and McCartney's video for The Jerusalem Fund.

The exhibit shows behind-the-scenes images by Bloomberg's Derek Wallbank from the truncated summit in Hanoi between Donald Trump and North Korea's supreme leader Kim Jong-un earlier this year, and a photo by political journalist Robert Yoon of North Korean soldiers patrolling the Demiliarized Zone in March 2018, with stories about these images in the exhibit catalog.

The exhibit and catalog feature an image and story by broadcast journalist Victoria Gaither from New Zealand following the mosque attacks in Christchurch, and a photo by Andrew Schneider of Air Force One, renamed Special Air Mission 41, carrying the body of former President George H.W. Bush back to Houston. The catalog includes a link to Schneider's report for Houston Public Media.

And the exhibit has many photos and images from Washington, including photojournalist Christy Bowe's work at the Trump White House and Capitol Hill, as well as shots of Club events by Darlene Shields. The exhibit also visits St. Anselm's Abbey, a Benedictine monastery in Northeast Washington, where Aileen Schlef describes in images and words the ordination of a new priest.

This year's exhibit offers a number of photo essays, where participants link their images together in a single narrative. Among the most compelling is a photo study of a homeless man living under a bridge in Paris, from Diane Stamm who writes for Bonjour Paris. Stamm says the man once raised cattle but lost his livelihood when a road was built through his farm.

The exhibit continues through Sept. 27.