Fine Art

Blueprint for Happiness: The Photography of Joana Cardozo

Several years ago, Joana Cardozo came to New York to work as a visiting attorney at White & Case, a prestigious international law firm. She had practiced law for twelve years in her native city of Sao Paulo, with a year in London earning an advanced degree in International Financial Law.

White and Case’s office is across from Bryant Park and, within a matter of days, Joana discovered the International Center for Photography (ICP). She had always enjoyed photography and had taken a class at Imã Foto Galeria in Pinheiros, Brazil. So Joana signed up for a course in street photography, thinking that photography would be the ideal way to get to know the city.

Photographing the streets of New York and its strange array of characters, Joana fell in love with both New York City and photography. When it was time to go back to her law practice in Brazil, she decided instead to apply to a one-year intensive photography course at ICP. She told herself that if she were accepted, she would spend another year in New York. Joana was 36 years old at the time.

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After completing her course at ICP, Joana was already reaping the rewards of her big change. Her work has been shown in galleries in New York, Illinois, Michigan and Vermont. Her photographic series Blueprints won the Juror’s Choice Award at the 2015 Filter Photo Festival in Chicago and also received two Honorable Mention Awards at the Moscow International Photo Awards.

Joana’s photographs reflect her sensibility as an artist and as a woman. Joana’s first Blueprint is a self-portrait made up photographs of the shadows of selected objects in her apartment, presented in a collage in the shape of the layout of the space.

fd222e_5eab06053d07479597577b0c21e8e1c0Blueprint One – Self-Portrait, 2015, archival pigment print, 24 x 40 in.

In Joana’s blue self-portrait, Blueprint One, there are shadows of tulips in a vase, a wine bottle and two glasses, two anthropomorphic toothbrushes in a cup, a lacey bra, various unidentifiable patterns and a dream catcher. The collage captures the whimsical and romantic spirit of the soft-spoken artist in a series of beautifully composed silhouettes.

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