The photography project “Beautiful people” is an ongoing series of portraits featuring people from Roma settlements in Slovakia. In the frame of Central Europe photography, this theme has been extended not only in terms of documentation of Roma poverty, but also because of visual particularities of the environment of the settlements and their inhabitants. Photographer Šymon Kliman decided to approach the theme with a new perspective not influenced by previous methods. The author’s contribution lies in disrupting traditional imaging conventions and in subsequent changes of stereotypical interpretations. His work reveals a new way of reflection on the issue of ethnic minorities.
Photographer Šymon Kliman focuses in his work on mutual convergence of diverse groups of people, on spreading awareness of their specific living conditions and on exposing them through installations in public spaces. His main artistic medium is portraiture escaping its standard form and context. The “Beautiful People” has gained the attention of the public and media and was awarded professional awards (Award of Rector of Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, VUB Bank price for the photography of the year 2009). Šymon Kliman also received the European Citizen of 2012 award.