For photographer Jacques Nkinzagbo, photography is about more than images. It’s about telling a story and for Nkinzabgo the story of modern day Rwanda is one he is determined to tell.
Photos show there’s more to Rwanda ‘than genocide’
“When I started to document my country I was very tired of people come and just talk about the genocide,” he told CNN. “Or all people know about my country is the genocide.”
“I want to show the beauty of people, I want to show the happiness of people.”
Nkinzagbo, a self taught photographer documents daily life in Kigali, capturing street scenes, people and everything in between.
“I always tell people, if you want to see the life of people in the country, just go out on the streets,” he said. “I always want to hear something from people. And get their experience. And tell their stories and people can learn from them.”
He got his start in photography after attending an international photography festival in Mali called ‘Bamako Encounters.’ After seeing photographers from across the continent, but none from his own country, he was determined to “put Rwanda on the map.”
In 2015 he co-founded the Kwanda Art foundation, an organization that promotes Rwanda’s art community through exhibitions, festivals and workshops.
When he not on the streets snapping or working with Kwanda, Nkinzingabo is teaching young children the art of photography. Keen to inspire the next generation of Rwandan photographers Nkinzingabo showcases his students work in local exhibitions and put their photos in his own exhibition in Germany last year.
“We wanted to show everyday life of people, where are we, and the kids wanted to tell their own stories,” he said.
“They were so happy to see the work from the street kids. They couldn’t believe that people that don’t have opportunity, they can have cameras and they can go out and tell their stories.”