Smita Sharma is an independent photojournalist based in Delhi and Kolkata. Her work primarily focusses on gender, health, social and human rights issues.
Her work has been published in various international publications including The Washington Post, The New York Times, BBC World, TIME Lightbox, The Globe and Mail, Spiegel, Channel 4, Caravan Magazine, Newsweek, Human Rights Watch among others. Her work has been screened and exhibited in various countries including USA, India, Cambodia, Myanmar, South Korea, France, UK and Saudi Arabia.
Her long term project Not My Shame on sexual violence and rape in India was shown during CSW-59 and CSW-61 (Commission on the Status of Women) at the UN Headquarters in New York.
She is the recipient of The Washington Post Award at the Eddie Adams Workshop in 2013, National Silver and PVCHR Bronze medal for Protection of Human Rights at Rex Conclave, Delhi in 2015. She was given Indian Of The Year award in 2017, for her contribution in the field of journalism by Brands Academy, Delhi. In 2018, she was given Exceptional Women of Excellence award by Women Economic Forum, Delhi.
In 2016, Smita organised a bicycle campaign along with non-profit PVCHR in Varanasi and donated bicycles to abuse survivors who were assaulted on their commute to school. The campaign was a way to de-stigmatise and reintegrate the girls in their communities and help them to continue their education.
Since 2016, Smita has been working on a project on human trafficking in South Asia where she is documenting the flesh trade, domestic servitude, bride trafficking and how it operates in the region.
Smita graduated in photojournalism and documentary photography from the International Center of Photography, New York in 2013 and has a post graduate diploma in Journalism from University of Pune. Born and raised in Shillong, India, she has lived and travelled for work in South Asia, Africa, Latin America and USA.
One Year Documentary Photography and Photojournalism program, International Center of Photography, New York.
Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism and Communication, Pune University, Pune, India.
Bachelors in Mass Communication and Video Production, North Eastern Hill University, Shillong, India.
Certificate in Digital Photography, New York Film Academy, New York.
2018 Stolen Futures - Women in Photography 2018 slideshow projection: Women Photograph at Objectifs, Singapore.
2018 Not My Shame - Exhibition in Peru as part of 24 Hour Project
2018 Not My Shame - Exhibition on Deepening Diversity, Women’s Rights and Democracy at India International Centre, New Delhi, India.
2017 Not My Shame - Exhibition and talk at CSW organised by Sayfty at UN Women Headquarters, New York.
2017 Group exhibition Insider/Outsider by Women Photograph - Photoville, New York.
2016 Not My Shame - Exhibition at Serendipity Arts Festival, Goa, India.
2016 Not My Shame - Exhibition at Indian Photo Festival, Hyderabad, India.
2015 Unearthed: Stories of Courage in the face of Sexual Violence in India - Exhibition at India Habitat Center, New Delhi, India.
2015 Unearthed: Stories of Courage in the face of Sexual Violence in India - Exhibition at Church Center, United Nations, New York.
2015 Doggie Divas - Exhibited at The Yangon Photo Festival, Yangon, Myanmar.
2015 “Not My Shame” - Solo exhibition as part of the TEDx Conference held at Yanbu City, Saudi Arabia
2014 Doggie Divas - Screened at The Angkor Photo Festival, Siem Reap, Cambodia.
2014 Doggie Divas - Screened at Visa pour l"Image, Perpignan, France.
2014 Women in Asia - Participant in a group exhibition at the Jeonju International Photo Festival, South Korea.
2013 Group exhibition The View From Here, Rita K. Hillman Education Gallery, International Center of Photography, New York.
2013 Group exhibition Streetscapes supported by The Royal Photographic Society, UK.
AWARDS & FELLOWSHIPS
2018 International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) Fellowship to report in Guatemala, Latin America.
2018 “Exceptional Women of Excellence Award” - Women Economic Forum, Delhi, India.
2017 “Indian Of The Year award” for Photojournalism by Brands Academy, Delhi, India.
2015 National Silver medal for Protection of Human Rights - Rex Foundation, Delhi, India.
2015 PVCHR Bronze medal for Protection of Human Rights - Rex Foundation, Delhi, India
2013 Recipient of ‘New York City Newstrain’ diversity scholarship organized by APME (Associated Press Media Editors), AP, New York.
2013 Recipient of George and Joyce Moss Scholarship for documentary photography, New York.
Doggie Divas included in the book “New York Edited”, published by Ostkreuzschule für Fotografie in Berlin, Germany.
“Not My Shame” included in Converging Media by John Pavlik published by Oxford University Press, New York.
CLIENTS AND PUBLICATIONS
The Washington Post, New York Times, BBC World News, TIME Lightbox, The Globe and Mail, The Wall Street Journal, Channel 4, ELLE UK, Caravan Magazine, Nature Magazine, Pacific Standard Magazine, Newsweek Magazine, Human Rights Watch, International Womens Health Coalition, Children's Hope Foundation, Women In the World, The Guardian, Ozy, Bright Magazine, FirstPost, American Photo, Quartz US, DNA India, Daily Magazine, CNN, Spiegel Online, Metro UK, CNN-News18, The Indian Express, Equal Times, Platform, UN News, News Deeply, Quint, Art F City, The Telegraph India, Arre, Outlook Magazine, ScoopWhoop, Woman News Network, Girls Not Brides, and Daily Mail UK.
SELECTED INTERVIEWS / REVIEWS
2018 Interview with BBC World News TV on “Domestic servitude trafficking in India”.
2018 Interview with BBC World Radio on “Domestic servitude trafficking in India”.
2018 Podcast - 10 Frames per second.
2017 The Photo Brigade Podcast - Adorama, New York.
2017 “The Big Debate with Nomia Iqbal” at the BBC Asian Network on sexual violence in India “It's Not My Shame”.
2016 Interview with Instagram - On International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
2016 Photographer Smita Sharma is taking on India's rape culture | Channel 4 News.
2016 Interview with Equal Times on “How India’s women are fighting against rape”.
2016 Interview “After her own sexual molestation, an Indian photographer portrays fellow survivors as heroes” | Quartz US
2016 Web Seminar - “Future Of Storytelling & Journalism”- Connectedreams.
2015 Photojournalist recalls the humiliation that Kamalika Das met at school, The Quint.
LECTURES & PRESENTATIONS
2018 Hosted - Global Vision event by CREDO Orbis, Constitution Club of India, Delhi, India.
2018 Panel Discussion - Addressing Gender Violence by CAFI and MARG at India International Centre, Delhi, India.
2018 Instructor at Foundry Photojournalism Workshop in Kolkata, India.
2017 Conducted skill lab on “Using photography for Social Justice” at Youth CSW , UN Headquarters, New York.
2017 Presenter - “Not My Shame” at Open Show New York , Videology Bar, New York.
2017 Presenter - An evening of photography and conversation, Red Bull House of Art, Detroit.
2016 Panel Discussion - Stories of her "OWN ” Indian Photo Festival, Hyderabad, India.
2016 Presenter - “Not My Shame” at Chennai Photo Biennale, Chennai, India.
2016 Panel Discussion - Beyond Boundaries, Chennai Photo Biennale, India.
2015 Presenter - Women photographers explore gender issues - Yangon Photo Festival.
2015 Lecture on Intercultural Understanding - American University, DC.
2015 Online Dialogue on The Use of Photography in Advancing Human Right - The Center for Victims of Torture.
2014 Speaker - International Conference on Broadcasting Media & Film Industry, Baltimore, USA.
2014 Presenter - 'Shoot4Minutes' event at Soho Photo Gallery, New York.
2013 Presenter - Open Show New York, The Bronx Documentary Center, New York.
Co-curator - “ Women in Photography ” screening at Obscura Photo festival, Penang, Malaysia.
DIRECTED & SCRIPTED
'The God Makers' - A Video Documentary on the idol makers of Kolkata, India. Researched, directed and co-edited for ABP.
'Crossbreed' - A Video Documentary on the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). Scripted, co-directed and co-edited.