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Sarah Caron wins 2012 Canon AFJ Award

Sarah Caron wins 2012 Canon AFJ Award

© Sarah Caron

July 2012

The Canon Female Photojournalist Award for 2012, presented by the French Association of Female Journalists (AFJ), has been awarded to French photographer Sarah Caron for her planned project on Pashtun women in Pakistan.

The 2012 Canon AFJ Award jury – including Cyril Drouhet (Le Figaro Magazine), Magali Jauffret (L’Humanité), Delphine Lelu (Images Evidence), Romain Lacroix (Grazia), Daphné Angles (The New York Times) and from the AFJ: Brigitte Huard, Catherine Lalanne (Le Pèlerin) and Florence Panoussian (AFP) – decided to support Sarah Caron in her proposed project about the Pashtun women who, due to rising religious extremism, are victims of complete segregation.

Sarah Caron wants to traverse the walls of segregation to give a face and identity to these women who remain hidden and locked up. Except for some cursory or illustrative images the intimate lives of Pashtun women haven’t been photographed. Caron will focus on several women to show an intimate view of their daily lives. Some of these women are courageously fighting, and risking their lives, in order to gain control of their destinies.

Caron explained: “Nowhere in the world is the gender imbalance so huge as it is in the Pashtun society today. With the impending withdrawal of NATO troops, and the return of the Taliban, Pashtuns are encouraged to maintain their extremist interpretation of religion, thus victimising their helpless mothers, sisters and wives.”

The 12th annual Canon AFJ Award, which is sponsored by Canon France and supported by Le Figaro Magazine, will be presented to Sarah Caron on Saturday 8 September 2012 at the Visa pour l'Image international festival of photojournalism in Perpignan, France. The prize money (€8000) from Canon France provides funding for the award-winner to do their report and complete the project within one year. The work will then be presented either as an exhibition or it will feature in an evening programme during the 2013 Visa pour l'Image festival.

Dutch photojournalist Ilvy Njiokiktjien won the 2011 Canon AFJ Award and her resulting exhibition ‘Afrikaner Blood/The Born Free Generation’, about the indoctrination of teenage white South Africans into adopting the apartheid attitudes of the past, will be shown during the 2012 Visa pour l’Image festival in Perpignan, France, from 1 to 16 September 2012.

The other previous winners of the Canon AFJ Award were Martina Bacigalupo, Justyna Mielnikiewicz, Brenda Anne Kenneally, Axelle de Russé, Veronique de Viguerie, Claudia Guadarrama, Kristen Ashburn, Ami Vitale, Sophia Evans and Magali Delporte.