2015 Emerging Photography Contender: Naima Green

For Jewels from the Hinterland, New York-based photographer Naima Green creates vivid portraits of New Yorkers of color within natural and fertile environments, combating the stereotypes that surround modern (and often prejudicial) notions of race and identity. 

Alex, Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Alex, Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Writes Green in her Artist Statement, “I make portraits of creative individuals in and around New York City, where figures anchor overgrown fields with abstract forms and vibrant colors. Those who choose to participate are creatives who find comfort in verdant environments. As nature grows around the individuals, so does the city landscape, like a continuous grid. In these photographs are city dwellers who identify with natural green spaces, regions where Black and Brown urbanites are not expected to inhabit. Our hinterlands. ”

Lorelei, Prospect Park

Lorelei, Prospect Park


“There are dominant and pervasive narratives that suggest Black and Brown bodies can only exist in hard, concrete, urban environments. I seek to add to the narrative by documenting growth in lush environments; and by showing the evolution of Brown bodies in green spaces, which was traditionally limited to depictions of work. I ask my participants to confront these ideas, the viewer, and the camera by gazing directly back at me. This gaze explores the nuances of ownership, confrontation and belonging.”

All images © Naima Green

Each week, Feature Shoot editors showcase the work of one photographer who has applied to the Emerging Photography Awards in order to highlight the diverse array of applications we receive. This is not an endorsement of the photographer for the award.

Apply to the Feature Shoot 2015 Emerging Photography Awards here. It pays to apply early, as we will be featuring some of our favorite submissions right here and over our social media channels.