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Grief, longing and immersion in life in front of the lens – World Press Photo 2022

Word Press Photo 2022 is an international exhibition of photojournalism and for many years we have been able to admire the exhibition of successful photographs in Barcelona. The fame and international importance of the event make the photo exhibition one of the most visited in the city. Place of celebration the World Press Photo 2022 is Center of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona. Further, the exhibition is enriched by numerous workshops, guided tours and other activities aimed at encouraging people to discuss the values and challenges of photographic journalism.

Word Press Photo 2022

18th World Press Photo 2022

On Sunday, November 13, we had the opportunity to see the entireWord Press Photo 2022  exhibition. When we left the building, our first thought was that it was a really ugly exhibition, not because we didn’t like the pictures. Not because they didn’t impress us. But because they made us feel uncomfortable, depressed and powerless. What is more, we looked at pictures, landscapes, interiors, people. We saw fear, terror, madness, longing, love, suffering, war. We looked at the photos, and they stared at us. In certain moment, I got dizzy, my ears rustled, my face got hot. I heard screams, shots, moans, gnashing of teeth and fire. I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, it’s just pictures, I whispered. It might seem that there are only pictures on the walls. But in reality, they are real people, real rape, real violence, a real brutal world.

Crying, regret, delight

Mexico, Palestine, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Greece, the whole world. Is it okay for people to have to live like this? Is it normal for hell to be at home, on the street, in people? After seeing this exhibition, we feel a lot of injustice, rebellion, discord. This exhibition is not only beautiful pictures and sublime landscapes, but also a piece of history – a difficult but important one. We looked at the tragedies of the people, the protests, the fires, the crosses with the clothes of the raped children, and we wondered who was behind the lens and what it must have cost to participate in the epicenter of suffering.

Moreover, photojournalism is not just about a good eye, intuition and art, but about courage and dedication. You’re trying to capture the moment, stop time in the photo, and you don’t know if before you press the camera button, you’ll get a bullet in the head, or if the police will arrest you. A good photo can cost you your life. Is it worth it?

The best of Word Press Photo 2022

In addition, our absolute favorite is the photo of a woman standing against the backdrop of a burning village in Greece. A woman cries not only for a lost house, but for a lost village, a lost existence. She’s screaming, but it’s like apnea. In other words, the sound would like to come out, but it seems like it’s missing. Therefore, we wish we could hug her, help her, cheer her up, but we look at this catastrophe and feel like before we can blink, her world completely collapses. We can’t hold her hand because that moment doesn’t exist anymore.

Word Press Photo 2022

18th Word Press Photo 2022

In conclusion, this exhibition not only touches, shocks and provokes, but also tells stories that must not be forgotten. We have a collective responsibility to remember, to pass on those stories and never let anything like this happen again. This international exibition of photojournalism not only draw our attention to essential issues, however also saved many people and places. Unfortunately, not from destruction, but at least from oblivion.

Pol Sàlvia, Miłosz Bajgier

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