Photographer and filmmaker, passionate aboutimage, Guerchom Ndebo uses photography to communicate his concerns on complexsubjects and to stimulate reflection on contemporary issues. At the heart ofhis artistic approach, the concepts of equality, cultural differences,solidarity and decadence collide.
Driven by the desire to tell the stories thatsurround him, he immersed himself in photography. With a university degree incommunication, he sought to train himself in photography to try to learn moreand improve his artistic approach. Participating in the Congo in Conversationproject by Finbarr O'Reilly and the Carmignac Foundation was for him a gatewayto photojournalism, with the other photographers of the project, he improvedthe quality of telling a story in images.
One of his first published subjects was oncharcoal "Makala". "A large part of my city uses charcoal whichhas a major effect on the environment because it comes directly from theexploitation of wood from the Virunga National Park. For me it was important totell this story to show what is happening in my region, but it was not easy tomake the photo report because of the presence of armed groups that occupy theforests and are the first producers of charcoal."
After the Congo in Conversation exhibition inParis, he was contacted by Getty Images and he started covering the news ofeastern Congo as an independent contributor. One of the first stories hecovered was the assassination of the Italian ambassador in February 2021.
In May 2021, he covered the eruption of theNyiragongo volcano for Agence France-Presse and his work was publishedworldwide, including in the New York Times, CNN, RFI, USA Today, The IrishTimes and on the front page of the Canadian daily The Globe and Mail. In theweeks following the eruption, he continued to work on regular assignments forAFP and on commissions from several NGOs and UN agencies.
He also won the LensCulture Critic's ChoiceAward, the Albert Kahn Avenir Photo Canon Award in 2021, the Photo StoryEmerging Talent Award at the Wildscreen Festival, NEWF Fellow and the NationalGeographic Explorer's Grant 2023.
I continue to work in close collaboration with Finbarr O'Reilly on upcoming stories and projects.
Photo by Finbarr O'Reilly - Goma-Congo DR, 2020
SELECTED HONORS + DISTINCTIONS
Prix Carmiganac du Photojournalisme - Contributor 2020 - 2021
InfoNile- EverydayNile Photojournalism Grant 2021
Lens Culture Critic's Choice 2021
Prix Albert Kahn - Avenir Photo Canon 2021
Photo Story Emerging Talent Award at Wildscreen Festival 2022
National Geographic Explorer’s Grant 2023
Congo in conversation, Grilles de la Tour Saint-Jacques, Paris 2021
AntwerpPhoto, Antwerp 2021
Congo in conversation, Villa Carmignac, Porquerolles 2021
Géopolis, Brussels 2021
Photo Ville, Brooklyn Bridge Park, New York 2021
Visa pour l'Image - Projection, Perpignan 2021
Kivu's Forests, a touring exhibition in Paris, Goma, Beni, Bukavu, Lubumbashi 2021 - 2022
Bronx Documentary Center, New-York 2022
ORIGINS, Artists' views of primary forests 2023
Lagos Photo Festival, Benin 2023