Black-and-white photography holds a special place in our hearts here at LensCulture, and we’re happy to see so many talented contemporary photographers choosing to share their visions of the world with all of the artistic nuance that comes with hundreds of shades of grey. Here we revisit 26 of the most popular recent articles that feature black-and-white photography – portfolios, essays, interviews, exhibitions and book reviews. There are many gems and great discoveries here.

Wee Muckers – Youth of Belfast. Belfast, Shankill. Bonfire preparations on Conway Street. © Toby Binder

Photos that Should Not be Possible
In “Wee Muckers – Youth of Belfast”, Toby Binder captures the ebbs and flows of teenage life across the divided communities of Northern Ireland. Photographs by Toby Binder. Essay by Sean Sheehan.

When home won’t let you stay. Shah Alam, 19, a fisherman who feels sea is his home. © Shahria Sharmin

When Home Won’t Let You Stay
Using a box camera, Bangladeshi photographer Shahria Sharmin’s arresting portraits bear witness to the plight of the Rohingya youth living in camps in the south of the country. Photographs by Shahria Sharmin. Text by Rachel Wolfe.

untitled_01 © Madhavan Palanisamy

appa and other animals
Disrupting the photographic gaze through drawing, text and digital manipulation, Madhavan Palanisamy creates an offbeat tribute to his father that is brimming with wonder. Photographs by Madhavan Palanisamy. Essay by Lodoe-Laura Haines-Wangda.

Longbow Practice, 2018. © Agnieszka Sosnowska

Myth of a Woman
Agnieszka Sosnowska’s striking self-portraits chronicle rural life in the volatile landscape of her adopted homeland, East Iceland. Photographs by Agnieszka Sosnowska. Interview by Rachel Wolfe.

Migratory Cotton Picker, Eloy, Arizona. November 1940. Gelatin silver print, 19 15/16 × 23 13/16″ (50.7 × 60.5 cm). Dorothea Lange. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Purchase

Words and Pictures
An online exhibition at MoMA pays tribute to the iconic photographer Dorothea Lange, whose work and legacy has never felt more relevant when viewed against the backdrop of our changing world. Photographs by Dorothea Lange. Online exhibition review by Magali Duzant.

From the book “Sleep Creek” © Dylan Hausthor & Paul Guilmoth

Sleep Creek
This experiment in shared authorship weaves together an enigmatic imaginary New England location out of spellbinding monochrome vignettes. Photographs by Dylan Hausthor & Paul Guilmoth. Book review by Cat Lachowskyj.

From the book “Summer Camp” © Mark Steinmetz

Summer Camp
In this beautiful monograph, Mark Steinmetz distills the timeless adventure of American summer camp into a series of tender observations on the nature of adolescence. Photographs by Mark Steinmetz. Book review by Justin Herfst.

Missouri. From ‘Highway 61’ © Jessica Lange, published by powerHouse Books

Highway 61
Actress and photographer Jessica Lange invites us on an epic journey: through the States, through the artist’s memory, and through our collective nostalgia. Photographs by Jessica Lange. Book review by W. Scott Olsen.

Untitled 03 © Ignacio Iturrioz

Ignacio Iturrioz’s brooding project is an ode to the memory of solitude, to the night, and to a mysterious building filled with eccentric characters. Photographs by Ignacio Iturrioz. Text by Justin Herfst

© Jens Krauer

Urban Street Portraits
Swiss photographer Jens Krauer takes to the streets to share some insider insights and talk about what drives his impulse to document our urban lives. Photographs by Jens Krauer. Essay by Gina Williams.

Mundane © Salma Abedin Prithi

Both bewitching and sinister, these staged photographs take a contemplative approach to the news stories of gruesome violence that reach Bangladesh’s headlines every day. Photographs by Salma Abedin Prithi. Interview by Amy Parrish.

Furka 2003. from the Series Stille Berge © Michael Schnabel

Stille Berge
Rejecting the stereotypical approach to photographing sublime mountain ranges in the light of day, this photographer instead points his lens towards the snowy peaks of the Alps at night. Photographs and text by Michael Schnabel.

Untitled No 1 © Adrián Fernández Milanés

Pending Memories
This collaborative photo project breaks down the traditional understanding of documentary photography as a medium necessarily bound to reality. Photographs and text by Adrián Fernández Milanés.

Animal Locomotion, Pl. 403: Emptying a Bucket of Water, 1887. Eadweard J. Muybridge (American, 1830-1904), University of Pennsylvania. Collotype; image: 22.5 x 34 cm (8 7/8 x 13 3/8 in.); paper: 47.4 x 60.4 cm (18 11/16 x 23 3/4 in.); matted: 50.8 x 61 cm (20 x 24 in.). The Cleveland Museum of Art, Gift of Laurence Miller Gallery, New York, in honor of Evan H. Turner 1992.220

The Abstract Underpinnings of Black and White: A Conversation with Barbara Tannenbaum
Journey across photography’s history through the Cleveland Museum of Art’s photography collection, as its head curator shares her insights on the enduring draw of black and white work. Photographs from the collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art. Interview by Sophie Wright.

Rebecca, Main Street, Poughkeepsie, NY, 2017 © Caleb Stein

Down by the Hudson
Caleb Stein’s monochrome collection of portraits is an “ode” to the small town of Poughkeepsie, that finds its resolution in the edenic summer atmosphere of the local swimming spot. Photographs by Caleb Stein. Interview by Sophie Wright.

I was returning from the grocery store when I saw a neighbor of mine and crime boss of the area sitting on the bench near the entrance of my apartment building. The neighbor was tattooing the arm of the boss, dipping the tattoo machine into potty with water. There were kids playing nearby. “Ah, the photographer!” the boss said. “Take a picture!” And, turning to my neighbor, added: “And you keep on working.” Several years after the boss disappeared. Reportedly, he went for a walk in the forest and never came back.

Letter from Russia - Malinikha Stories
A compelling personal story — told with black-and-white photos and conversational captions — about coming of age in a working class town in Russia. Photographs and text by Evgeniy Petrachkov.

Masquerade. Desnos Tour of Sarcelles. © Camilo Leon-Quijano, LensCulture Emerging Talent 2018

The Fume of Sighs
By stripping the world of color, this photographer uses black and white processes to visualize the emotional experiences that come with mourning and friendship. Photographs by Camilo Leon-Quijano. Essay by Cat Lachowskyj.

Bond #22 © Anna Reivilä

Hiking for months on end through a remote archipelago in Finland, artist Anna Reivilä uses Japanese bonding techniques to create striking land art. Photographs by Anna Reivilä. Interview by Cat Lachowskyj.

Grandma Divers 10. Soon-ja Hong of Seongsan comes out of the water holding an octopus. She explains that she and her fellow Haenyeo set traps to catch octopuses which come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Today she was lucky to catch this large specimen. Now 69, she is at the peak of her career, It has taken Soon-ja many years to build up her endurance and fine-tune the hunting techniques that enable her to dive most efficiently. But even the most experienced divers must follow the strict rules imposed by the fishing cooperatives including diving cycles that allow the women to work seven days on and eight days off in order to recuperate. © Alain Schroeder

Grandma Divers
An ancient fishing tradition on the island of Jeju endures today, continued by the Haenyeo women or the ‘women of the sea’—a group of free-divers all over the age of 50. Photographs by Alain Schroeder. Text by Sophie Wright.

Republic of Congo, 2013 [SCENE #0525]. Pointe Noire, Funeral of a 13-year-old girl. © Alex Majoli

Scene: When photography intervenes in street theater of the real
A dark, moody, cinematic new photobook and exhibition raise questions about the role of photography as a hybrid of documentary, mediated reality, and art. Photographs by Alex Majoli. Review by Jim Casper.

Scottsboro, Alabama, 1976 © Rosalind Fox Solomon

Liberty Theatre
After the devastating Charlottesville riots of 2017, Rosalind Fox Solomon returned to her decades-old photographs of the American South, realizing her symbolic images resonate today just as much as they did when she first clicked her shutter release. Photographs and photobook by Rosalind Fox Solomon. Text by Jon Levitt.

1076 S Fairfax Ave. From : Twentysix Billboards, L.A. 2019 © Klaus Frahm

Twentysix Billboards
Taking inspiration from seminal photographers like Ed Ruscha, Walker Evans and the Bechers, this photographer documents the overlooked sides of billboards of L.A. Photographs and text by Klaus Frahm

Mother. My mother refused to come to my place. She can not accept me for who I am, but still loves me. © Maria Dupovkina

I can’t find the right word
In a series of collaborative self portraits, this photographer explores the complexities of how we label identity, from gender stereotypes to motherhood. Photographs and text by Maria Dupovkina.

© Dustin Thierry

Black Queer Diaspora in the Netherlands
Powerful, defiant portraits that speak to the prevailing strength and presence of LGBTQ people of color in the Netherlands. Photographs by Dustin Thierry. Text by Cat Lachowskyj.

pole vault VII © Klaus Lenzen

pole vault
As they stretch and glide through the air, these athletes are photographed in quiet, small moments of physical grace and temporary weightlessness. Photographs by Klaus Lenzen.

From the series “Ida: Sketches” © Ryszard Lenczewski

Cinematography: From Still to Movie
The award-winning Polish cinematographer talks about the tremendous importance of still photography in creating his movies — especially his film, Ida, shot in luscious black-and-white. Photographs by and interview with Ryszard Lenczewski. Interview by Alex Strecker.