In/visible Ethnicities – Portrait Project by Vanessa Newark

Vanessa Newark is a London-based fashion and portrait photographer who also works as a journalist. One of her recent projects, In/visible Ethnicities, explores how people of mixed ethnicities identify themselves, are identified on Census forms, and are perceived in society.

The project presents a series of portraits alongside interviews with people of mixed ethnic backgrounds. Their stories and insights reveal a disconnection between personal ethnic identity and social perception of ethnicity.

“Many subjects reported that their ethnicity was assumed to be either one whole ethnic group or the other, Vanessa writes. Meanwhile, “aspects of their invisible identity tended to be overlooked.” The portraits ask the viewer to reconsider the ways in which ethnicity is perceived, defined and recorded.

To see more of Vanessa’s photography, visit her website or Facebook page.

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Colombian/Egyptian
Perceived ethnicity: Greek, Turkish, Arabian, South American or Indian.

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: English/Indian/Jamaican
Perceived ethnicity: Black

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Indian/Scottish/Jamaican/St. Lucian
Perceived ethnicity: Indian or mixed race

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Irish/Caribbean
Perceived ethnicity: White, Italian, Mexican, Spanish, North African, Algerian or Indian.

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Jamaican/Bajan
Perceived ethnicity: Black

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: British/Caribbean
Perceived ethnicity: Brazilian, Mexican, Puerto Rican, Spanish, Egyptian, Persian, Mauritian or Indian.

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Indian/Syrian/Dominican
Perceived ethnicity: Black, Latin American or Black and White.

In/visible ethnicities

Ethnicity: Antiguan/Jamaican/Chinese
Perceived ethnicity: Black

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2 Comments on "In/visible Ethnicities – Portrait Project by Vanessa Newark"

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Vanessa Newark

Thanks so much Stephanie for the brilliant and kind feature! 🙂

David Thurston

I was seriously thinking about a similar project myself. I just found it awkward to approach people and as if I could shoot them as they are from a different ethnicity!

Great shots.

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