Wednesday Photo: Bangladeshi and Pakistani migrants in the lower decks of an overcrowded people-smuggling fishing boat

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©Jason Florio/MOAS.eu 2015. All rights reserved – in the cramped hull of a people-smuggling boat, in the Mediterranean Sea, post-rescue

 

‘In the fetid bowels the last of an estimated 200 people that were below deck on a fishing boat carrying 416, wait for the rescue team to evacuate them. Many of them were Bangladeshis, who had lived in Libya as skilled guest workers until the security situation made it untenable to remain, forcing them to take the only route possible where already over 1800 had died in the past 6 months in hopes of getting to safety.’  JASON FLORIO

 

Recently published, along with exclusive black and white portraits of rescued migrants and refugees, a 35-page feature, in VQR – Virginia Quarterly Review – Winter 2016 edition. See more of Florio’s images and read the full feature here.

 

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VQR cover shot © Jason Florio/MOAS.eu, 2015

 

 

23 AFAR Photographers You Need to Follow on Instagram Right Now – #11 Floriotravels

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Big thanks to AFAR Magazine, and Maggie Fuller, for including our Floriotravels Instagram page in their list of 23 photographers to follow.

What to expect from his Instagram: Florio and his wife, photography and expedition producer Helen Jones-Florio, share their Instagram. It’s a mix of the snapshot travels of two photographers and deep, emotional looks into some of the countries in which they work, from the people of The Gambia to refugees in Malta.’ Read more on AFAR Magazine

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Related Post: ‘Runners High’, Kenya – for AFAR Magazine

‘Now take them home with you instead of putting the burden on others’ Mrs Overtaxed. One of the more ‘polite’ responses to migrant and refugee boat rescues

MOAS rescuies 361 migrants after spotting them with the Schielble camera copter
Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved

 

A good friend of mine posted a comment on her FB page yesterday, in response to some of the disturbing comments, about the migrant and refugee crisis, left on another FB page: ‘I’m not mean but let them in will be the end of gsy it’s hard for locals to live now all most of them will do is go on the dole and get free houses let there govoment sort it out in stead of putting all the money they get in there pockets so they have a good life and there people go with OUT’ JB of the Channel Islands. My friend asked if I would comment, as my husband, photojournalist, Jason Florio, has recently been documenting the boat rescues for MOAS, onboard the Phoenix, in the Mediterranean Sea, off the coast of Libya.

In response: 

I saw your FB post earlier, S., and, yes, it makes me extremely sad, and aghast, that people can be so myopic and so grossly uninformed – to put it politely. And, I did think twice about posting this link from Migrant Report : ‘The Pictures That Need to Be Seen‘  (caution – the images are truly shocking and devastating). But, in light of some of the comments I read on the above mentioned FB page, I believe the images should be seen, if only to wake, shake, up some of the commentators.

Palestinian-Syrian boys Mohammed and Amar sleep on the decks of the MOAS rescue ship The Phoenix after being rescued
Palestinian-Syrian boys Mohammed and Amar sleep, peacefully at last, on the decks of the MOAS rescue ship The Phoenix after being rescued. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved.

As you know, S., Florio has been documenting, for MOAS (Migrant Offshore Aid Station), onboard the Phoenix, their boat rescue missions in the Mediterranean; thankfully, he didn’t witness this particular horrific incident, but some of his colleagues have – and it’s not the first time they have either. Before Florio began working with MOAS, I was horrified by the news reports… how the hell could parents be so irresponsible as to take their babies and small children – and, in some cases, send their 14 year son, completely alone – on such a dangerous and life-threatening journey?! It was completely beyond my comprehension. However, I have since watched numerous interviews Florio has recorded, post-rescue, onboard the Phoenix – with many migrants and refugees – and the consensus is that the majority (particularly those from Syria, for example) would have done anything not to leave their homes, their professions – many are lawyers, doctors, nurses – behind and/or risk the lives of their whole family, to venture into the complete unknown. But, when your life is in constant danger; you live under a brutal dictatorship; you are forced to join the National Service at any early age, for an indeterminate amount of time, paid very poorly – and not allowed to leave until you are too old to follow your life ambition to be i.e. a doctor (Google: Eritrea); your basic human rights are ignored (Google: Ethiopia); the list goes on  – there is often little choice, other than to move on, to find a better life.

A member of the MOAS team on the the deck, now empty of migrants but strewn with discarded items including three chidrens 'Disney character' paddling pool rafts and a childs rubber ring.
A member of the MOAS team on the the deck, now empty of migrants but strewn with discarded items, including three childrens ‘Disney character’ paddling pool rafts and a child’s rubber ring. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved
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Prayers of thanks – post rescue – onboard the Phoenix. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All right reserved

Is that so difficult to comprehend? Maybe so, for those of us lucky enough to have the freedom to sit comfortably each day, eating our three square meals, as we watch the 6 o’clock (mostly edited just so, so as not to offend – too much) news, from the safety of our homes, through the impenetrable barrier of a screen; without the perpetual worry of a bomb dropping on your home, or your children being fatally wounded by shrapnel, whilst out playing in the street… . Imagine that. And, yes, we can argue the fact that the countries where thousands, upon thousands are fleeing from (the numbers are staggering) need to address what is going on, the people smugglers need to be stopped, and so on… but all of this will take time, a long time, to even begin to put right. In the meantime, these thousands of people men – women, children, babies – are on a survival mission, and they need sanctuary now, after having left behind everything that is familiar to them; often taking little more than a memento of their home with them (such as a letter from loved one, a tattered copy of the Koran, protected by a plastic bag, a postage stamp, a local coin – all real things, that people have shown Florio, during interviews). And, don’t even get me started on what they have to go through, even before they pay thousands of dollars to get on one of those nowhere-near-seaworthy-enough-to-make-it-to-Italy-boats!, out of lawless Libya… this subject is well documented. Just check out more of the links on Migrant Report, and, in time, through some of the interviews Florio has conducted (just think rape – on both men and women – torture, kidnapping, imprisonment, starvation, forced unpaid labour), for a forthcoming documentary from MOAS.

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What you don’t see is the 150+ people in the hull. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved.
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Youtube: footage © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved. Click here or on above image to view. These young Eritreans described how, when they reached Libya and were held captive, their friend was tortured with a metal rod, inserted into his anus – he did not survive. This subject was deemed too shocking to add to this particular edit.

 

The images of dead children are shocking beyond belief and have been condemned by many as ‘sensationalism’, ‘headline-grabbing‘, ‘emotive‘… . Yet, the reality is, is that this is happening on an almost daily basis, out there in the Mediterranean, and many of the people fleeing towards a ‘better life‘ are already aware of the immense dangers they face, and possible death. Again, how can we (us, the ones who watch the teatime news, as another tragedy at sea unfolds, from our comfortable armchairs) possibly comprehend what propels people to take their whole family, walk out their front door, with just the clothes that they are wearing, and – in many cases – walk across deserts, other countries, to take such unimaginable risks?

Mimmo one of the members of the MOAS search and rescue team who had help save 4 month old Daryl and his family two days before, carries him ashore at the port of Messina, Sicily.
Mimmo, one of the members of the MOAS search and rescue team, who had helped save 4 month old Daryl and his family two days before, carries him ashore at the port of Messina, Sicily. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved.

 

So, perhaps now it is time to take the kid gloves off and face the harsh reality, see those images close up… . After all, it’s nowhere near (nowhere near!) the utter wretchedness that many, many people are enduring every single day, in an attempt to find that better life.

Welcome to Europe!

Helen Jones-Florio

#HumanityWashedAshore

Links – to become more informed:

Migrant Report

MOAS_EU  – also, this is where you can donate to help keep the ‘Phoenix’ rescue boat in the Med., for as long as it’s needed.

MSF

UNHCR

 

Press and published work

May 2018

 

American Photography 34 Winners - image ©Jason Florio - 'Destination Europe' shell-shocked West African migrants on board rescue boat, Mediterranean, as their smugglers dinghy is set on fire in the background
American Photography 34 Winners – image ©Jason Florio – ‘Destination Europe’

American Photography 34 Slideshow – image ©Jason Florio‘Destination Europe‘ shell-shocked West African migrants on board rescue boat, Mediterranean Sea, as their rubber dinghy is set on fire in the background, to prevent the smugglers (who followed them) reusing it.

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April 2018

Bonobos Guidebooks

Press: Lalibela, Ethiopia ©Jason Florio - Bonobos Magazine
Press: Lalibela, Ethiopia ©Jason FlorioBonobos Magazine

Lufthansa Inflight Magazine

Press: Lufthansa Inflight Magazine - image ©Jason Florio man in pink turban, Ranakpur, India,
Press: Lufthansa Inflight Magazine – image ©Jason Florio

 

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Feb 2018

LensCulture Exposure Awards 2018 – Winners, Finalists, and Jurors’ Picks

LensCulture Exposure Awards 2018 - Winners, Finalists, and Jurors' Picks
LensCulture Exposure Awards 2018 – Winners, Finalists, and Jurors’ Picks

 

Jan 2018

IRIN News - images © Jason Florio
IRIN News – images © Jason Florio

 

Documentary for Amnesty International - press release
Documentary for Amnesty International – trailer

 

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Oct 2017

Exhibition - Magnum Photography Awards 2017/Lens Culture - The Photographers Gallery, London

Exhibition: Magnum Photography Awards 2017 / LensCulture Winners The Media Wall, The Photographers, Gallery16-18 Ramillies Street, W1F 7LW 9th – 18th October 2017 – image © Jason Florio/Photojournalism Series Winner

 

 

July 2017

Press: The Guardian - images © Jason Florio 'Destination Europe' Magnum Photography Awards 2017 - Photojournalism Winner
Press: The Guardian – images © Jason Florio ‘Destination Europe’ Magnum Photography Awards 2017

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Magnum Photography Awards 2017 – Jason Florio Photojournalism Winner

Magnum Photography Awards 2017 PHOTOJOURNALISM JASON FLORIO United Kingdom 'Destination Europe'
Magnum Photography Awards 2017 PHOTOJOURNALISM JASON FLORIO United Kingdom ‘Destination Europe’

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April 2017

Mariama Saine - one of the last Gambian's to be arrested and tortured under Jammeh's regime, The Gambia, West Africa - portrait © Jason Florio
IRIN NEWS: Mariama Saine – one of the last Gambian’s to be arrested and tortured under Jammeh’s regime – portrait © Jason Florio

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March 2017

 

Mohammed - repatriated Gambian from Libya, by IOM - image © Jason Florio
IRIN NEWS: Mohammed – repatriated Gambian from Libya, by IOM – image © Jason Florio

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November 2016

VQR – Jason Florio ‘Prize for Photography‘, Nov 2016

Jason Florio – VQR Prize for Photography, 2016, ‘Out of the Sea’
Jason Florio – VQR Prize for Photography, 2016, ‘Out of the Sea’

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September 2016

National Geographic - Remembering 9/11, in pictures - image © Jason Florio
National Geographic – Remembering 9/11, in pictures – image © Jason Florio

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August 2016

PDN COVER2 AUG 2016
Photo District News (PDN) – ‘The Fine Art Photography Issue’ – featuring Helen Jones-Florio/Gallery

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March 2016

IRIN - Bye Bye Dreams
IRIN – Bye Bye Dreams-The inside story on emergencies. Image © Jason Florio/MOAS.EU

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Mashable - online
Mashable – online   Image © Jason Florio

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Al Jazeera America interview with Jason Florio
Al Jazeera America-  interview with Jason Florio

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February 2016

Mother mourns the loss of her children in the Aegean Sea - images ©Jason Florio/MOAS.EU, 2016
NPR (National Public Radio) – mother mourns the loss of two of her children, who tragically drowned in  Aegean Sea – Rescues images ©Jason Florio/MOAS.EU, 2016

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January 2016

President Yahyah Jammeh, The Gambia, West Africa - Roots Homecoming Festival 2015 © Jason Florio
President Yahya Jammeh of The Gambia, West Africa – Roots Homecoming Festival, 2015 © Jason Florio

 

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Men, women, and children were amongst the first rescues made by the MOAS’ search and rescue team, in the Mediterranean Sea, 2015 – © Jason Florio/MOAS_EU

 

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VQR Cover image © Jason Florio/MOAS_EU, 2015. Rescues in the Mediterranean Sea

 

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VQR – ‘Out of the Sea – Portraits of a Rescue on the Mediterranean’. Images © Jason Florio/MOAS_EU, 2015

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December 2015

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Arik Airlines – ‘Wings Magazine’ 25th Issue – image (fisherman with net, The Gambia, West Africa) © Jason Florio view magazine here

 

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October 2015

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Click here or on above images to go to AFAR Magazine page –

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Images © Jason Florio/MOAS_EU – IRIN

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August 2015

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015 – words by Louise Hunt

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015 – click above image to view

 

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July 2015

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BBC News All images © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved.

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Migrant Report – images © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved. Click here or on above image to view video

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Independent Newspaper. Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved. Click here or on above image to view full article

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Daily Mail – images © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved. Click here or on above image, to view the full feature.

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Click here or on image to read the interview with photojournalist, Jason Florio

 

June 2015

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved – Norway News

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Image © Jason Florio – click on above image to view

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015 . All rights reserved

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Image © MOAS_EU/JASON FLORIO

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Migrant Report – Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015

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Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved

Jason Florio’s best photograph – Africa migrants crammed into a boat off Libya – The Guardian

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Newsweek – Image © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015

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May 2015

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Foreign Policy. Images © MOAS_EU/Jason Florio, 2015

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Vice News – Images © MOAS/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved

 

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The Guardian – Image © MOAS/Jason Florio, 2015. All rights reserved.

 

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April 2015

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Portraits of Karen State People, Myanmar © Jason FlorioMissatge Rebut!

 

 

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Photographer, Jason Florio, and photography and expedition producer, Helen Jones-Florio, : ‘Silafando’ Exhibition opening, Gaya Art Café, The Gambia, West Africa – review by Anna Wedin for Afrope.se (for translation, use translate.google.com)

 

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Rwanda – images © Jason Florio, for MIT Review Technology/Redux PIctures NYC –

 

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March 2015

BLOOMBERG2_LAGOSJason Florio in Lagos, Nigeria, West Africa, for Bloomberg Markets (photo agent: Redux Pictures, NYC)

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Walking the coastline of The Gambia – words: Jason Florio / Images © Jason Florio & Helen Jones-FlorioWings Magazine/Arik Airlines

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Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 12.56.32 PMNGO, Concern Universal talk to Jason Florio about his work

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Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 12.27.39 PMThe Gambia, West Africa – paying the price for being Ebola free by Helen Jones-Florio on Concern Universal blog

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January 2015

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Click here or on above image to view feature and slideshow of images – Virginia Quarterly Review

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PRO PHOTO DAILY_EBOLAFREE GAMBIA
AI-AP PRO PHOTO DAILY – words by Helen Jones-Florio

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Walking Gambia coastline_Brussels Airlines
Walking the Gambian Coastline for B.Spirit Magazine/Brussels Airlines

 

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December 2014

Arik Air ‘Wings’ inflight magazine:

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Arik Air – ‘Wings’ Magazine: Quad Biking in The Gambia, West Africa. Images © Jason Florio

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Travel with Kat
Travel with Kat magazine – featuring images by Jason Florio. Click above image or here to view the magazine

 

Maptia_river gambia
River Gambia Expedition on Maptia.com – Images/Words by Jason Florio

 

November 2014

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Image © Jason Florio
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Image © Jason Florio

 

October 2014

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Exhibition: ‘River Gambia’ East River Ferry, NYC – Oct 20th -Nov 30th, 2014

 

September 2014

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National Geographic – Image © Jason Florio – to see more from this body of work, check out floriophoto.com

 

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Tablet Magazine – Image © Jason Florio

 

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The Payphone Project – Image © Jason Florio

 

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July 2014

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Presidio Modelo prison, Cuba, stills © Jason FlorioLittle Bear Pictures ‘A Brief History of Confession’. Click image or here to view film

 

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Image © Jason Florio for New York Times – Aspire Football Academy, Senegal, West Africa

 

June 2014

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Sidetracked Magazine feature Photos Tell Stories founders, Jason Florio & Helen Jones-Florio’s, ‘River Gambia Expedition’

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Read the who article by clicking here or on the above image

 

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Image © Jason Florio – for Oprah Magazine

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Press: May 2014

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The Voice newspaper, The Gambia, review Photos Tell Stories exhibition

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GRTS: Photos Tell Stories exhibition opening night – with Jason Florio & Helen Jones-Florio (47 secs in)

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AdoramaPIx, NYC, please click the above image or here to read the full feature

 

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April 2014 – nomination

ASME VQR

April 2014: Jason Florio – nominated for ASME (American Society of Magazine Editors) award, 2014 – Feature Photography/VQR ‘Life on the River Gambia‘. Winners to be announced 1st May, 2014

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The New Yorker – Feb 2014

 

For all press on the River Gambia Expedition and A Short Walk in the Gambian Bush, please click here

For Jason Florio press and awards, please click here

Published/Editorial work, please click here

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Press: December 2013

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HuffPost Arts & Culture  – more press about the River Gambia Expedition HERE
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Slate Magazine – December 2013 – Read full feature here

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/julie-grahame/2013-year-in-photography-fine-art_b_4462989.html
Thanks to Julie Grahame of aCurator for choosing our ‘River Gambia Expedition -1044km source-sea African odyssey‘ in her 2013 round-up. Click here to visit Huffington Post website

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Published: Images © Jason Florio for Concern Universal, NGO, The Gambia, West Africa

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Image © Jason Florio. See more here

 

Geographical Magazine – ‘Go with the Flow’

GEOGRAPHICAL COVER
Cover shot © Jason Florio

 

Arik Airlines ‘Wings’ Magazine – ‘A River Runs Through It

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Image © Jason Florio

 

Virginia Quarterly Review‘Life of the River Gambia

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Image © Jason Florio – source of the River Gambia, Fouta Djallon Highlands, Guinea

 

For more press news, please visit floriophoto.com