Benedite Topuz wins Gold
Benedite Topuz: series category, Gold
French photographer Benedite Topuz has a friend to thank for her series win in our Love, Pain and Beauty competition: she told her about the competition and Benedite thought the theme was perfect for her series “May...December”. The judges agreed, awarding the series Gold.
As Benedite explains, breast cancer is a topic too many of us can identify with. “One woman out of eight has breast cancer. It’s a curable disease but a real challenge to any woman. These self-portraits chart all the changes a woman has to face: seven months of fight which are also seven months of paying particular attention to your femininity, to your inner self and to truth.”
During cancer treatment, Benedite notes that “time does not keep the same pace. Patience becomes your companion and your body your guide. Though the cancer itself is invisible to the naked eye, the side effects of the treatment insist upon visibility. For seven months, in 2008, I scrutinised the essence of my femininity. Being a photographer, this was my instinctive reaction to the disease.”
The entire series is made of 23 photos, mainly self-portraits but also some photos of notes, making the series function almost as a diary.
A photographer and editor, Benedite likes to mix photography and writing wherever possible. She specialises in fine art but also works in corporate photography and photojournalism. Each year, she visits Arles for the Rencontres Internationales de la Photo and Visa pour l’image photography events to show her work. She also has plans to go to Houston and Birmingham in the next couple of years.
She is currently working on a long term photography project which focuses on handicapped children and adults, as well as a series called “Home” which she started during her convalescence. “May...December” is currently being exhibited in Brighton, where it will be on show until 8th November.