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A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words

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Teresa Manero is a 27 years old photographer, from Spain but she has been living in London since 2010.

After being awarded for several photography prizes in Madrid, Teresa Manero now wants to make a name for herself in London. So far her photography has been showcased at the “Cally Festival” (Islington) and the Biscuit Factory in Bermondsey. Her work has recently been shown alongside the members of the North London Darkroom within their first exhibition “Artefacts”.

She studied Fine Arts at Complutense University, Graphic Design and Printmaking at the School of the Royal House of Mint (Madrid) and obtained a grant to study photography at Camberwell College of Arts in 2010. She is currently working as an artist assistant and parallel to her job she continues working on her personal artistic and graphic design projects, also collaborating with other artists or curators.

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When did you get your first camera?
I got my first camera as a Christmas present when I was 9 years old, a film compact Olympus. I was really impressed to have my own camera!

When did you first become interested in photography?
I wouldn’t say there is a specific moment, I have been interested in photography all my life… I grew up surrounded by black and white images, with the smell of chemicals in our basement and pictures hanging on the clothes dryer. My mother has a darkroom at home since I can remember and I got used to negatives and photography equipment around me.

As an artist, what inspires you and your work?
I can find inspiration in everything: interesting faces, landscapes, pieces of writing, exhibitions, or just a quiet and cloudy day… But the best way to be inspired is to live in a creative environment, sharing interests and passions with the people that you spend the time with.

Which photographers have most influenced your work?
I have always been fascinated by Sophie Calle’s practice, it is inspiring how she captures ideas and then redistributes them as part of her subjective experience. She has influenced me in projects where I have worked with personal experiences and share this intimacy with the audience, as Sophie Calle usually does. I am also amazed by Taryn Simon’s work and her way of combining photography, graphic design and text in her practice. Inspiring me in the use of typologies in portraiture and the mix of mediums within the same artwork.

There is an expression that says “An image is more valuable than a thousand words”, do you believe this to be so?
I believe that an image has a strong power and it can be instantly shocking. But I also understand writing as an impressive and complex way of communication.

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Tell us about a photograph or project that you have recently been impressed by?
I had the chance to visit  “Contexto crítico. Fotografía española siglo XXI” in December 2013 in Madrid, a really interesting exhibition of young Spanish photographers. I was impressed by Mikel Bastida’s project, a recreation of a WWII photographer’s figure across Western and Eastern Europe, and also by the serenity of Jesus Madriñán’s portraits.

What has been the most fun you have had while working in the past few months?
June 2013, working at the charity event ‘Great Sussex Bath Race’ with filmmaker Jonathan Maguire, director of the production company: Third Revolution Media. It was a great occasion to combine work and fun. We spent the day photographing and filming the event, where different teams had race boats made by hand; everybody was friendly and had a great time. The best part is that it was happening for a good cause.

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You have recently exhibited some photographs at “Artefacts”, show of the North London Darkroom. Can you tell us more about your experience?
I have recently shown alongside the members of the North London Darkroom within their first exhibition “Artefacts”, when they selected 3 of my pictures at the NLD Black and White Contest. It was an honor to show with the other selected photographers as well as with the members of the North London Darkroom, and the show was brilliantly curated by Elena Gaddini.

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What advice would you give to any young and aspiring photographers?
Follow your passion! I believe that people should pursue their dreams, but also build their careers with constant work, everyday practice, perseverance: never give up.

What future projects are you working toward?
I hope to get involved in some more Editorial Design work after the project “Grain”, an annual publication launch by the North London Darkroom on December 2013. I am also looking forward to work with Third Revolution Media, developing a graphic design and communication department. I will also be developing my personal photographic projects and I would love to collaborate on independent projects with curators like Elena Gaddini or Tania Moore.

You can contact Teresa Manero on Linkedin.

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