José Cendón, 37, Spain, studied economic science, journalism, and cinema before turning to a profession in journalism. From 2002 to 2004 he worked as a freelance writer and intermittently as a photographer in Colombia, Venezuela, Israel, and the Palestinian Territories. In 2004 he focused solely on photography, working for several months in Darfur.
From 2004 to 2010 he worked in East Africa. In 2007 he received 1st prize in the Contemporary Issues Stories category of World Press Photo Awards, 1st prize in the Magazine Issue Reporting Story category of the Pictures of the Year Awards and an honorable mention in the Leica Oskar Barnack Prize. In 2009 he received two honorable mentions: one in the Best of Photojournalism contest and the other in the China International Press Photo contest. In 2010 he won the Ortega y Gasset award in photography given by El Pais newspaper, one of the most prestigious journalism awards in Spain, for a story on Somalia published in the Magazine of La Vanguardia newspaper. In the same year, he won the RevelaOleiros Grant, in Spain.
His work has appeared in major publications, including Time Magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, Stern, Internazionale, Leica World Magazine and others. He was also selected by the annual publication American Photography 23.
In November 2008 he was kidnapped in Somalia while on assignment for the British newspaper Sunday Telegraph along with the English journalist Colin Freeman, and both were released in January 2009. Cendon then took a year off to write “Billete de Ida” (One Way Ticket), a book about Somalia, with the kidnapping as a backdrop to analyse the situation of that lawless nation and bring together all of his experiences during his numerous trips there.
His photographs have been the object of several solo and group exhibitions all around the world.
Now he is based in Bogotá, Colombia, and is available for both local and international assignments.
2010 – “Africa Through a Photographer’s lense”, Modern Art Museum of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa.
2010 – “Pilares de África”, Fundación Mutua Madrileña, Madrid, Spain.
2009 – “Miedo en los Grandes Lagos”, Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno (IVAM), Valencia.
2007 – “Fear in the Great Lakes”, Yours Gallery, Warsaw, Poland.
2007 – “Fear in the Great Lakes”, Alliance Ethio-Française, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
2010 – “A 1,20 metros: los derechos de la infancia vistos desde su altura”, travelling exhibition, Spain.
2009 – Festival Proxecta de Fotografía, Vilagarcía de Arousa, Spain.
2007-2008 – World Press Photo, travelling exhibition.
2007 – Leica exhibition, Istanbul, Turkey.
2006-2009 – “34 Miradas Contra el Olvido”, Médicos del Mundo, travelling exhibition, Europe.
2009 – “Billete de Ida” (“One Way Ticket”) published by Temas de Hoy, Spain.
2007 – A Journey to Africa by AFP.
2005-2009 – Annual Photo books of AFP.