Visura in partnership with The Current, a center for contemporary art, is delighted to announce Moroccan documentary photographer M'hammed Kilito as the second recipient of the 2022 Visura Grant for Visual Journalists.
Kilito will receive a $2000 cash prize to continue working on "Before it’s gone," an ongoing project that highlights the multidimensional issues of oasis degradation in Morocco and its impact on its inhabitants. This grant is an opportunity for up to 5 Visura members who identify as visual artists, journalists and/or storytellers working on self-funded long term projects. The theme for this year’s grant is focused on visual stories about climate change, environmental justice, gender equality, racial justice, and human rights.
Based in Rabat, Morocco, Kilito's work focuses on capturing narratives that help understand the relationship between groups or individuals and their environments, by covering issues related to cultural identity, the sociology of work and climate change. His hope with this visual project is to draw attention to this situation by alerting public opinion, policy makers, and concerned organizations. He also wants to protect the ancestral heritage of the nomadic culture in Morocco, as well as the preservation of the oasis ecosystem.
"I decided to work on this project to highlight these multiple concerns rarely covered by the media and largely unknown to the general public," Kilito wrote in his proposal. "My research also aims to better understand different approaches, practices, and programs applied to the valorization, conservation, and sustainable development of heritage sites such as the oasis, which are known to be environmentally sensitive."
Rachel Moore, Executive Director at The Current described Kilito as a highly talented photographer and visual storyteller who is producing critical work. "His series, 'Before it's gone', sheds perspective on a subject that is ecologically and geographically specific to Morocco,"she says, "yet transcends this specificity and importance of documenting locality by incorporating global themes of human relationships and their impact on and response to the climate crisis worldwide."
For the duration of 2022, The Current and Visura partnered in an effort to enhance the human experience through the visual arts. Together, the art center and media tech startup will award an annual residency, announce the recipients of this year’s 2022 Visura Grant for Visual Journalists, and collaborate in a group exhibition. The partnership was in part also made possible with the support of an anonymous donor, who in 2022 made a generous contribution to The Current.
M'hammed Kilito (b. 1981, Lviv) is a freelance documentary photographer based in Rabat, Morocco. His work focuses on capturing narratives that help understand the relationship between groups or individuals and their environments, by covering issues related to cultural identity, the sociology of work and climate change.
In 2021, Kilito is participating in the prestigious two year VII Mentor Program with VII Agency. He was also selected by Ateliers Medicis and the Centre national des arts plastiques (Cnap), to take part in the French national photographic commission: "Regards du Grand Paris" and was designated as north African regional coordinator for the 2022 World Press Photo Contest.
In 2020, Kilito was chosen by the British Journal of Photography among the 18 best emerging photographers from across the globe to watch, was the winner of 6x6 Global Talent by World Press Photo, became a National Geographic Explorer, received The Photography Prize of the Fondation des Treilles and won CAP Prize, the Prize for The Contemporary African Photography. This same year, he co-founded KOZ, a collective of four Moroccan visual artists working on long-term projects and sharing a passion for storytelling.
He is an alumnus of the 2019 edition of the Eddie Adams Workshop in New York where he earned a National Geographic Award. In 2018, Kilito was part of the Arab Documentary Photography Program, a joint program by Magnum Foundation, Arab Fund for Art and Culture (AFAC), and Prince Claus Fund during which he worked on his ongoing project Portrait of a generation questioning the realities of Moroccan youth. In 2016, he received a grant from the Ministry of Culture of the Kingdom of Morocco and started photographing the series Destiny about the relationship between work and social determinism which was exhibited at PhotoESPAÑA Festival (Madrid), the French Institute (Rabat), Addis Foto Festival (Addis Ababa), Revela'T Festival (Barcelona) and The Africa Institute (Sharjah).
His work has been shown at festivals and venues including Sharjah Art Foundation (Sharjah), 1:54 Art Fair (Paris), Tate Modern (London), National Museum of Photography (Rabat), Beirut Image Festival (Beirut), Photo Vogue Festival (Milan), Helsinki Photo Festival (Helsinki) and Breda Photo Festival (Breda) amidst others. His photographs have been featured in magazines and newspapers such as The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The British Journal of Photography, Vogue Italia, L'Express, VICE Arabia and El Pais.
Kilito holds a Master of Arts in Political Science from Ottawa University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Montreal.University.
Visura is a global platform for visual storytellers. The membership platform is a destination for publishers to license visual content directly from freelancers, and a home for visual storytellers to access business tools to showcase and sell editorial, creative and commercial images directly to publishers, businesses and visual content buyers.
The Current is a center for contemporary art in Stowe, Vermont. We have progressive programming that balances challenging critical and thematic exhibitions with community events. We are free to the public, offer a wide range of public programs associated with our exhibitions, and have a robust education department.