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The Impossibly Objective Lens: A Photojournalist’s Reflections on the Story Behind the Camera

April 13, 2022 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

$25 Ally Price: FREE

The assignment may seem straightforward: to simply document what is occurring in front of the lens. In pursuing this goal, many photojournalists have mastered the art of blending into their surroundings, positioning themselves and their cameras as witnesses to the reality unfolding before them. But objectivity is never simple: From the choice of what to put in frame, to the personal stories, experiences, beliefs, and physical presence that accompany each photojournalist into the field, a certain amount of subjectivity is inescapable. 

In “The Impossibly Objective Lens,” German-born documentary photographer and visual storyteller Sarah Pabst explores whether true objectivity is possible — or even preferable. Pabst will share some of her own work, and discuss not only how the person behind the camera can accept their part in the stories they tell, but the possibilities such acceptance reveals. Hidden Compass co-founders Sabine K. Bergmann and Sivani Babu join Pabst to discuss which doors are opened by recognizing the emotional connections and narrative choices of photojournalists — and the new spectrum of storytelling these openings reveal.



Sarah Pabst is a German-born documentary photographer and visual storyteller based in Buenos Aires. Her work is often autobiographical, but also focuses on women, identity, human rights, and environmental issues. She is a National Geographic Explorer and a Pulitzer Center grantee. Her work has been exhibited worldwide and has been published in numerous international outlets such as Time, National Geographic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Bloomberg, and Der Spiegel, among others. She has won awards in competitions such as Picture of the Year International, POY Latam (Picture of the Year, Latin America), the Daylight Awards, the International Photography Awards, the Lensculture Emerging Talent Award, Arles’ Voies Off, Athens Photo Festival, and the Gomma Grant. 

Her first book, Morning Song, was a Lucie Foundation Photobooks Award finalist and was named one of the best Photobooks of 2021 by the Photographic Museum of Humanity. She is a member of Women Photograph and Ayün Fotógrafas, a collective of 8 female photographers united by Latin America, that recently announced their partnership with the storytelling collective Noor. In 2022, she was nominated as a mentor for the Women Photograph Mentorship program.


Sarah Pabst
April 13, 2022
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Sarah Pabst
Alliance Price