Dhaka 1000-1200, Bangladesh
A photographer, writer, curator and activist, Shahidul Alam obtained a PhD in chemistry at London University before switching to photography. Returning to his hometown Dhaka in 1984, he documented the democratic struggle to remove General Ershad. A former president of the Bangladesh Photographic Society, Alam set up the award winning Drik agency, Bangladesh Photographic Institute, Chobi Mela festival, Majority World agency and Pathshala, the South Asian Media Institute, considered one of the finest schools of photography in the world.
Exhibited in MOMA New York, Centre Georges Pompidou Paris, Royal Albert Hall and Tate Modern London and Museum of Contemporary Arts Tehran, Alam has been a guest curator of Whitechapel Gallery, Winterthur Gallery, National Art Gallery Malaysia, Musee de Quai Branly and Brussels Biennale. Alam’s numerous photographic awards include Mother Jones, Howard Chapnick Grant, Open Society Institute Audience Engagement Grant and Shilpakala Award, the highest honour given to Bangladeshi artists.
A speaker at Harvard, Stanford and UCLA universities in USA, Oxford and Cambridge universities in UK and Powerhouse Museum in Brisbane as well as TEDx, POPTech and National Geographic, Alam has been a jury member in prestigious international contests, including World Press Photo, which he chaired and Prix Pictet, chaired by Kofi Anan. Honorary Fellow of Royal Photographic Society, Alam is a visiting professor of Sunderland University in UK and advisory board member of National Geographic Society and Eugene Smith Fund.
John Morris, the former picture editor of Life Magazine, considers his book “My journey as a witness”, listed in “Best Photo Books of 2011” by American Photo, “The most important book ever written by a photographer.” “Birth Pangs of a Nation” edited by Alam, was voted the best book of 2012 at Asian Publishing Convention. His recent show “Kalpana’s Warriors” was voted “Best Exhibition” at Dali Festival in China in 2015.
2016 - Shilpakala Award, 1998 - Howard Chapnick Grant, 1998 - Andrea Frank Award, 1992 - Mother Jones, 1983 - Harvey Harris Trophy
- Video capture