TBnet Photo Contest results were presented at the 14th TBnet meeting in Madrid.
The winners were defined already in March on the World TB Day by online voting system on the TBnet website. The 1st and the 2nd place winners were eligible to a voucher of 250 euro to attend the TBnet meeting and to present their work.
The first place went to Traian Panciu Constantin, a pulmonologist, for his photo TB awareness campaign in Bucharest. “It may not be one of the photos that are going to be exposed in world class photography expositions, but i think that my idea was exactly what most of the people would understand. Anyone can get TB. I took an X-ray lung image and did a series of self-portraits with it in the business area of Bucharest. People were coming up to me asking what was I doing and if this was my own X-ray image and if I am ill. I tried to confer the message that everyone can have TB irrespective of income, gender or country of origin. More than the TBnet prize, disseminating the TBnet contest and all the photos made by other participants, really made it worth it.”
The 2nd place winner is Elena Chernyshova with her photo project describing the time when she fell ill with tuberculosis while being pregnant. Elena took a series of photos reflecting her life and worries as a young mother that has to go through the TB treatment.
Elena Chernyshova was not able to come to the TBnet meeting but Kseniia Shchenina, another TB survivor and TB community activist, presented her work. In her speech, Kseniia said:
“I’m here to present to you a photo project by a Russian photographer Elena Chernishova. She should be here by herself but could not come because of family issues. First of all Elena ask me to say thank you to all people who do TB studies and try to find new methods and drugs that can treat TB. When you are a patient, you don’t think about researchers but without you we would not be alive.
Elena Chernyshova did here project for post soviet countries. Her main idea that psychological support as much needed as antibiotics. Her personal story is a sad. The MDR-TB was found during her pregnancy. This was so awful for her. She started living in her head and did not understand what is the reality around her. Sometimes she run from hospital and walk for hours. The trauma of separation from her newborn child is hard. She could not talk about it for 6 years and did this project only last year.”
The dramatic and at the same time beautiful photos of Elena Chernyshova were exhibited during the meeting. More about her photo project you can read here (article in Russian)