I was born in 1987 in Basel / Switzerland.
To me a successful photograph is a copy of a relationship. It is not simply a picture but both sides of the lens captured and maintained with respect and trust. It is my passion to search for strong bonds between the visible reality and the invisible intimacy. Therefore I try to be open, photography is a give and take. The picture finds me and I try to capture what I see. If there is the truth to find, I try to find it in photography.
A picture has the power of simplifying the indescribable and therefore it has a greater legitimate demand for veracity to me. Being a young photojournalist my profession expands from documentary and reportage to composing people’s portraits as well as opera and theatre photography.
I am fascinated by the nature of people. While traveling I try to capture the variety and diversity of what I see. Through communication I get close to what might seem distant in foreign countries and different cultures. This helps me to find the vulnerability and authenticity in genuine and accidental moments and often brings something closer that deserves our undivided attention and unprejudiced sympathy. When portraying artists, actors and people I try to use this same approach to find THEIR variety of characters within themselves. This mutually shared moment of time is what I want to show.
Travel drives her passion to search for the fleeting moment, captured by her camera. Suitably empathetic, Xiomara Bender photographs people in their everyday situations, unpretentious and authentic. Staging is a stranger to her, and respect for her subject is all the more important: her images abound with individual personalities.
For the German-Swiss photographer, tolerance and openness go a lot deeper. Xiomara learnt these non- negotiable values daily in her early home life and they unmistakably shape her work as an artist today.
Curious about the unknown and open to the world around her, Xiomara left home for India at the age of 17 years to finish her school education. This was followed by training in hotel management, and practical application in the top rank of German luxury hotels. But the passion for photography finally won out over a conventional career: Xiomara decided to make her calling her profession. Instead of climbing the planned career ladder she jumped off; instead of the Director’s office she switched to the lecture theatre of the Berlin Technical Art School, with no return ticket; total risk as the price of uncompromising freedom from convention.
Dr. Stefan Grüll http://dr-grüll.de
Awards & Exhibitions
NOW 2018 – PortrAid Solo Exhibition / VW Drive Showroom Berlin / Vernissage 13th February 2018 & Solo Show at Gallerie Kirsten Roschlaub Hamburg to be anounced
2018 – PortrAid Solo Exhibition / VW Drive Showroom Berlin
2017 – Deutscher Fotobuchpreis 2018 Silber – Hochschule der Medien (HdM)
2017 – Solo Exhibition Galerie Paul Sties “North Korea / The Power of Dreams” / Kronberg im Taunus
2016 – Solo Exhibition Palais Thurn & Taxis “North Korea / The Power of Dreams” Exhibition 06th.–10th. December 2016
2016 – Exhibition Künstlerhaus Meinersen ” Nordkorea / Die Kraft der Träume”
2016 – Book Release ” North Korea / The Power of Dreams” Kehrer Verlag & Book Presentation at Helmut Newton Foundation Berlin, Museum für Fotografie
2016 – Fine Art Photography Award (FAPA) Category Wildlife/Animals Nominee “Great Migration”
2014 – C/O Berlin Foundation „Close Up!“ 64th Berlinale “Abrakadabra” / 1. Prize
2014 – Galerie Neurotitan Berlin „Borderline“ / groupshow „Ein Blick“
2013 – International Photography Award (IPA) – Category Editorial – Honorable Mention „Trip to ZAMBIA. Tribute to LOVE!“
2013 – ddp Publikumspreis / Wundermann for Lufthansa “Die unglaubliche Reise der Xiomara Bender
2012 – International Photography Award (IPA) – Category Spaces Outside, one Picture – Honorable Mention „Himalayas – The top of the world covered in monsoon rains“