Miguel Proença (1963) is a Lisbon, Portugal born photographer. Currently based in Portugal (about Lisbon and Tavira) where he works and studies. Photographic work is frequently initiated from a documentary/ reportage standpoint and undergoes an “estrangement” process. This path frequently accesses formalist and surrealist aesthetics. Recent work has drawn on disciplines other than photography. These include painting, sculpture, video, sound and music in a collaborative approach to the creative process.
Commissioned work has concentrated and specialised over the last decade on the reproduction of works of art. Other commission work has been in various specialty areas namely architecture, environmental portrait, landscape for editorial and other purposes. Formats used include digital and analogical black and white large formats. Samples of this commissioned work can be found in the National Library (Portugal) archives.
The first conscientious contacts with photography dates to the 1970s in the UK, practicing and studying photography, first at Clayesmore School (Dorset, UK) and subsequently on scholarship at the Bournemouth and Poole College of Art and Design (1979-80). Technical skills were furthered at the Instituto Português de Fotografia (1981-83). During the 1998-2001 period continuing studies included documentary photography with Leonardo Brogioni, and photographic language and theory with Emilio de Tullio and Roberto Signorini in Milan, at the John Kaverdash School and at the Círcolo Filológico Milanese. While in Milan work concentrated on street photography for the covers of Free Milano Magazine (2000-01). Other work during this time included Fiera de Sinegallia (1998-1999), Arts and Traps (1999-2000) and the beginning of Alqueva Dam work (2000-2004), with the latter two, more political statements, also published as photo books.
Currently continues a formal theoretical development route, started with the conclusion of a postgraduate degree in Photographic Studies (IADE, 2003-05). This was followed by a master’s degree in Art History at the Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas (FCHS) of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa [dissertation tittle: “Fernando Lemos: “Eu sou a fotografia”” (Fernando Lemos: “I am photography”) supervised by Joana Cunha Leal and Margarida Acciaiuoli]. Currently working on a doctoral thesis at the Faculdade de Belas Artes (U. Lisboa, 2010–) on environmental landscape photography.
Environmental landscape definition
With formal training and practise in agronomy, soil science and farming systems research and extension(BSc University of Florida, 1989), photographic work taps into this body of knowledge, where social issues and pressures resulting from environmental changes serve to ground and orient the construction of documental work. The integration of this life/social sciences training has additionally taken the author towards the idea of an environmental landscape definition. This idea-in-progress (ie environmental landscape definition) currently serves to formulate questions about research project work, particularly in his native country, Portugal, where the beginning of oil drilling and fracking are today (2018) a very real risk due to government policies.
This site is dedicated to photo work, from long term documental and environmental portrait, landscape and more experimental work. The experimental work is in areas such as portrait, environmental landscape definition, cityscape, multimedia and reportage. It is also dedicated to showing work in a portfolio format as a photographer, clearly different from printed versions of the work. Commission work is available upon request.
mp · 2018.