Valery Konkov and Valeria Dellisanti both perceive nature as a highly symbolic element. The former pierces its beauty to depict a dangerous world, and the latter uses it to explore the notion of loneliness. These are our readers picks #254.

Valery Konkov

22-year-old Russian photographer Valery Konkov studied history, before enrolling at the School of modern photography in Saint-Petersburg. Nowadays, he defines himself as a documentary photographer, while still paying attention to the beauty of an image. “It seems to me that only through aesthetic perception can we understand the most complex and important topics”, he tells us. To create his series, Valery Konkov travelled to the north of Russia, in the city of Monchegorsk, known for its important mining and metallurgy plants. “Life there depends on those industrial plants. They are parts of their customs but also spread pollution”, he says. Noxious emissions the government wishes to keep secret. “As I was working on my project, I was imprisoned by the security service of the plant and sent to the local Federal security service, who threatened me”, he adds. In his images, the cold nature of the territory is as beautiful as dangerous. A dying landscape, hidden behind mountains of snow. An immersion into a space “whose air is saturated with toxic gas”.

© Valery Konkov

Valeria Dellisanti

Valeria Dellisanti, 23, studies and works as a photographer in Italy, her native country. “I bought my first camera when I was 16. I started studying in an art school, where I learnt how to frame an image, but my passion for photography was born a few years after, when I left the South of Italy to move North and settled in Bologna. There, I bought my first analogue camera”, she explains. By developing an instinctive, spontaneous or even intimate approach, Valeria Dellisanti explores the notions of fragility, change and loneliness. The images she shares come from her book called Summer, published in September 2017. “I’ve gathered the pictures I took from the rivers of Emilia-Romagna to the coasts of the Adriatic Sea. Those fragments of my summer form a photographic journal, as well as an attempted dialogue between nature and the human body”, she tells us.

© Valeria Dellisanti