PhotographerMark Bennington
PrizeHonorable Mention
CompanyMark Bennington Photography
City/CountrySyracuse, United States
Photo Date2014
Entry Description

My most recent project in India titled MI MUMBAI. This body of work translates in the local language to “I am Mumbai.” The entire project has been shot on the streets of Mumbai with a white backdrop in natural light. The images are my attempt to give the citizens of Mumbai agency against standardized modes of identification, thwarting caste and class systems, while simultaneously creating a vision of equality in a declarative and unifying portrait of the city.

About Photographer

Since 2004, I have worked as a freelance portrait/documentary photographer, mostly on the west coast. Now based in New York, some of my clients include: American India Foundation, The United States Navy, Random House, Harper Collins, Texas A&M University, The National Association of Science Writers, The American Society of Journalists & Authors and The Getty Center of Los Angeles. So far this year I have spent two months in India working on the MI MUMBAI project and printing the first run of my documentary photography book project titled, Living the Dream: The Life of the ‘Bollwood’ Actor- which explores the lives of those who dream for real against the odds of the world's largest film industry. On that same subject, last year I authored a 17-page spread on Bollywood actors for The Virginia Quarterly Review, using images from Living the Dream. In addition, various bodies of my work have been featured and reviewed in The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal India, The Times of India, The Boston Globe, Le Journal de la Photographie, A&U, Lucky and Forbes. Prior to working as a photographer, I worked as an actor for almost a decade in New York and Los Angeles, doing everything from Shakespeare and Ibsen (with Sir Ian McKellen) to various guest-starring roles on T.V. shows like Star Trek Voyager, NYPD Blue and Charmed, to name a few. As fate would have it, while in Mumbai this year I briefly acted again, co-staring in a Bollywood film (speaking only Hindi), due to release in December 2014. In May 2014, I will return to Mumbai as an adjunct professor with Syracuse University’s Summer Abroad program.