The scene of a murdered couple. The woman was far into her pregnancy. The couple’s heads touched in a last embrace. A single bullet entered the man’s skull and took all three lives. Image by Dominic Bracco II. Mexico, 2011.
Pulitzer Center grantee Dominic Bracco II has been named runner-up in the inaugural Getty Images and Chris Hondros Fund Award. The judges recognized Bracco's "demonstrated commitment to photojournalism...as he tackles some of the most challenging stories of our time with a brave and a clear purpose." Bracco spent several years documenting the lives of young people in the violence-wracked border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Photographer Andrea Bruce, who has worked extensively in Iraq and Afghanistan, was named the award's first recipient.
The prize honors Chris Hondros, a Getty Images photojournalist who was killed along with fellow photographer Tim Hetherington in April 2011 during a mortar attack on the besieged city of Misrata, Libya. Bruce and Bracco will be honored at the Chris Hondros Fund Benefit and Silent Auction on June 21 in New York City. As runner-up, Bracco receives a $5,000 award to "continue his work of creating a visual history that provokes thought, raises awareness and fosters understanding."
C.J. Chivers, senior writer for The New York Times, highlighted the award in his blog The Gun and cited Bracco’s photography as an example of "honest reporting."
“It becomes representative of a type of work that is both common to journalists and unfamiliar to many people outside the profession and the craft," Chivers wrote. "Why? Because its meaning, like so much that journalists encounter when working, is unclear.”
Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas, has become the murder capital of the world. Most vulnerable are Los Ninis, young men and women who earned their name from “ni estudian, ni trabajan”—those who neither work nor study.