Open Competition Third Prize Winner
André François has been making photographic ￼documentaries for 20 years. He has published a number of books and founded ImageMagica NGO, with a unique mission: to use photography as an instrument of social transformation, especially in the area of health and education. Through his projects related to health, François' images have been distributed to health ￼professionals, students and journalists, resulting in the François Brazil encouragement of humanitarian groups inside hospitals, and both national and international institutions.
In 2008 François started a worldwide documentary called Life Project which aims to find and document simple and creative initiatives that help people's lives and can be reproduced anywhere. François visited the Kibera and Mukuru slums in Africa, where he saw the impact of issues relating to food security and access to water. The initiatives in operation there were begun by Solidarités International, who train people to teach families how to produce their own food at home. This type of agriculture relies on very little water, only a small amount of land and cheap materials, so that people can grow vegetables in their own backyards. Produce not only feeds families, but can also be traded and is transforming the quality of life of people living in the slums. "By showing this to the world, my intention is to inspire people from different places to make the necessary changes in their own communities in order to have a better and healthier life."
As well as the slums of Kibera and Mukuru, Life Project has so far documented the indigenous community of Yanomami Brazil; Cambodia, one of the poorest countries in Southeast Asia; the Inuit community in the Nunavut territory in Canada's Far North; Haiti, following the earthquake that devastated the country in January 2010; Queens in New York; Japan, after the earthquake of 2011.