For Nick Kristoff’s New York Times opinion column, VII Mentor photographer Christopher Lee photographed Tanitoluwa “Tani” Adewumi, who lives with his family in a shelter in New York City. Tani went from chess novice to chess champion in little over a year.
Tani and his family fled Northern Nigeria in 2017 fearing Boko Haram. Since arriving in NYC, Tani began attending PS 116 where he was taught chess by a part-time chess teacher. A year later, he was crowned state champion, beating out peers from wealthy private schools that have coaches and resources that someone like Tani wouldn’t have had access to. “Tani is a reminder that refugees enrich this nation — and that talent is universal, even if opportunity is not.”
Congratulations to Mathias Svold of the VII Mentor Program for being named Photographer of the Year in Denmark!
This photo is from a story about the people who live along the Whanganui River in New Zealand, made on assignment for National Geographic. Jack Cashmore is resting after he has hunted and killed a stag deer that he carried up a hill in Owhango, New Zealand. He uses the deer for food and it’s skin.
This past October, Mathias Svold of the VII Mentor Program spent a week on the loneliest road in America on assignment for National Geographic.
“Where the state of Nevada folds in half—from the elbow on its western arm at Lake Tahoe across to its Utah border—you’ll find the most direct route across the state. It crosses several communities, a handful of mountain ranges, a national park, and one reservoir, where bobcats, foxes, and wild horses roam free. There’s life, yes, but not a familiar way of life for many. It’s a place where the lines between John Wayne Westerns and everyday life blur, where ghost towns bleed into living ones. This is Route 50, the Loneliest Road in America.”
Sharon Castellanos’ project, Un llamado, created for the 2018 Joop Swart Masterclass, focuses on diverse profiles of young people (Generation Y) who come from other cities and countries to the Cusco region of Southern Peru and their socio-cultural-spiritual explorations, their reception and appropriation of the local ancestral culture, the Andean worldview, and the conception of Pachamama (Mother Earth).