Penso


B. 1978
ITALIAN
BASED IN ROME

Deeply committed to social issues, Alessandro has made the issue of immigration in the Mediterranean and Europe his focus in recent years.

He has won prizes with World Press Photo; Magnum Foundation Emergency Fund Grant; Getty editorial grants;Burn Magazine Emerging Photographer Fund; and Terry O’Neill Tag Award. His work from Greece was also the focus of a major exhibition entitled The European Dream: Road to Bruxelles, which travelled through Greece, Italy, France, Switzerland and Belgium, where it was shown at the European Parliament.

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Alessandro works regularly with Italian and international publications and his work has been widely published, including in The International Herald Tribune, TIME, The Washington Post, Businessweek, The Guardian, BBC, Human Rights Watch, L’Espresso, D di Repubblica and Vanity Fair Italy.

His images have been widely exhibited at festivals in Europe, and he regularly conducts photographic workshops and seminars.

Alessandro is based in Rome.

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Selected Works

Niger, Europe's new Southern border

Niger, Europe's new Southern border

Alessandro Penso

Niger, second only to the Central African Republic as the poorest country in the world, is at the heart of Africa’s Sahel region. Nigerians have always crossed the Sahara, which connects West and North Africa, and so Niger has been a country of the “passeur,” or “ferrymen,” who transport people through its territory. It also…

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The European Dream

The European Dream

For almost seven years, I have been photographing the conditions of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in Europe, with a particular focus on European Union border countries. I have aimed…

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Migrant Workers Journey

Migrant Workers Journey

The project “Migrant Workers Journey” describes and documents the social and human working conditions of migrants employed illegally in Italy in the agricultural sector, mainly as seasonal worker during the…

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Refugees in Bulgaria

Refugees in Bulgaria

In 2013, due principally to the war in Syria, Bulgaria found itself in the middle of international migration flows like never before. Caught completely unprepared for the around 11,000 refugees…

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Unaccompanied minors in Serbia

Unaccompanied minors in Serbia

Further along the Balkans route, I found 1,500 people stuck, living in old industrial warehouses in the Serbian capital Belgrade. More than half of these people were unaccompanied minors who…

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Exhibitions