photo by Erika Zucchiatti



Melissa Ianniello  (Naples, 1991) is a documentary photographer based in Bologna, Italy. After graduating in Philosophy, she studied documentary photography at Spazio Labo', in Bologna, including participating in its international educational program, “Photo Workshop New York”, in Brooklyn.

In 2018 she began her first long-term project, Wish it Was a Coming Out, about the taboo in Italy surrounding older homosexual people. In 2020 she created My Girl is a Boy, a story about her ex-boyfriend’s FtM transition. In the same year, she was selected as a student for the XXXIII Virtual Eddie Adams Workshop.

Her photographs have been exhibited at important festivals such as SI FEST, Helsinki Photo Festival, Photoville Fence and PHOTO IS:RAEL. After being a finalist for the Pesaresi Prize, she won several Italian and international awards such as the first edition of Biennale della Fotografia Femminile and the John White Keep In Flight Award. Above all, she was a finalist for the W. Eugene Smith Grant 2020.

The Guardian, Spiegel Wissen, Internazionale, L-Mag, Are We Europe and L'Oeil de la Photographie are some of the newspapers and magazines that have featured her work.

Her artistic research focuses on themes related to gender, sexuality and identity. 




Melissa Ianniello (Napoli, 1991) è una fotografa documentarista con base a Bologna. Si laurea in Filosofia e successivamente studia fotografia documentaria presso Spazio Labo', a Bologna, prendendo parte anche al suo programma di studi internazionale, “Photo Workshop New York”, a Brooklyn.

Nel 2018 inizia il suo primo progetto a lungo termine, Wish it Was a Coming Out, sul tabù legato all'omosessualità nella terza età in Italia. Nel corso del 2020 realizza My Girl is a Boy, una storia sulla transizione FtM del suo ex compagno. Nello stesso anno, viene selezionata come studentessa per il XXXIII Virtual Eddie Adams Workshop.

Le sue fotografie sono state esposte in importanti festival come il SI FEST, l'Helsinki Photo Festival, il Photoville Fence e il PHOTO IS:RAEL. Dopo essere arrivata finalista al Premio Pesaresi ha vinto diversi premi italiani e internazionali tra cui la prima edizione della Biennale della Fotografia Femminile e il John White Keep in Flight Award. Soprattutto, è stata finalista al W. Eugene Smith Grant 2020.

Inoltre, è stata pubblicata su diverse riviste come The Guardian, Spiegel Wissen, Internazionale, L-Mag, Are We Europe, L'Oeil de la Photographie.

La sua ricerca artistica si focalizza sui temi legati al gendere, alla sessualità e all’identità.








Awards

2021

- Bresciani Visual Art Special Female Photograhy Award, winner 

2021

-  KLPA2021 Portrait Prize, Kuala Lumpur International Photoawards, finalist

2021

– Tokyo International Foto Awards,  3rd place (Bronze Prize) in the category People/Portrait and  2nd place (Silver Prize) in the category Editorial

2020

– John White “Keep in Flight” Award, winner

2020

– W. Eugene Smith Grant, finalist

2020

– World Report Award, finalist in the category Single Shot

2020

– Moscow International Foto Awards, 3rd place (Bronze Prize) in the category People/Portrait

2020

– Helsinki Photo Festival, winner

2020

– FMoPA's 10th Annual International Photography Competition, 2nd place in the category Documentation / Photojournalism

2020

– Biennale della Fotografia Femminile, winner

2020

– Italy Photo Award, finalist

2018

– Gran Premio Lumix Portfolio Italia Award, finalist

2018

– Voglino Prize, finalist

2018

– SI FEST Lanfranco Colombo Prize, winner

2018

– Marco Pesaresi Award, finalist

2017

– CHEAP Street Poster Art Festival, selected

2016

– Photo Vogue Festival, Portfolio Review, selected

2014

– CHEAP Street Poster Art Festival, selected
Solo Exhibitions

2021

- My Girl is a Boy, video installation within “Roma Fotografia”, Palazzo Merulana (Rome, Italy)

2021

- Wish it Was a Coming Out, “Fuori Biennale”, Biennale della Fotografia Femminile (Mantova, Italy)

2019

– Wish it Was a Coming Out, SI FEST Savignano Immagini (Savignano sul Rubicone, Italy)

Group Exhibitions

2021

–Wish it Was a Coming Out, Roma Fotografia, Bresciani Visual Art Gallery (Rome, Italy)

2020

– Wish it Was a Coming Out, PHOTO IS:RAEL International Photography Festival (Tel Aviv, Israel)

2020

– Wish it Was a Coming Out, Photoville Fence (Atlanta, Brooklyn, Winchester, Calgary, Denver, Durham, Houston, New Orleans, Sarasota, Seattle - USA)

2020

– Wish it Was a Coming Out, Helsinki Photo Festival (Helsinki, Finland)

2020

– FMoPA's 10th Annual International Photography Competition (Tampa – Florida, USA)

2018

– Wish it Was a Coming Out, Centro Italiano della Fotografia d'Autore (Bibbiena, Italy)

2017

– #Disorder, CHEAP Street Poster Art Festival (Bologna, Italy)

2014

– #Green, CHEAP Street Poster Art Festival (Bologna, Italy)




Publications
The Guardian | Spiegel Wissen | Internazionale | L’Oeil de la Photograhie | Are We Europe | Will Italia | Tagebuch | Myp Magazine | Donna Moderna | ze.tt | l-mag | Babelmed |  Medfeminiswiya




Training

2020

– The Eddie Adams Workshop XXXIII, New York (USA)

2019

– Spazio Labo’ Photography, “The Languages of Photography”, Bologna (Italy)

2018

– Spazio Labo’ Photography, International Master in Documentary Photography with Davide Monteleone, Bologna (Italy)

2014

– PWNY 2014, “Discovery Street”  with Landon Nordeman, New York (USA) 

2014

– PWNY 2014, “The Open City” with Carolyn Drake & Andres Gonzalez,  New York (USA)

2014

– PWNY 2014, “The Other Story” with Erica McDonald,  New York (USA)

2014

–  Spazio Labo’ Photography, “Being Involved” with Michael Ackerman, Bologna (Italy)

2013

– Spazio Labo’ Photography, “Fotogiornalismo di news e attualità” with Alessandro Tosatto,  Bologna (Italy)

Education

2013

– BA in Philosophy, Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna (Italy)





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