© Iva Zimova - The Rural People of Afghanistan

I don’t know many photographers, or I should say people, like Iva Zimova. We have been friends for a while now but I had heard so many stories about Iva before even meeting her that  I can’t pinpoint the exact moment we talked or met. I know it was between 2003 and 2005 because I was in the photography program at Dawson, which she had aslo studied at and consequently had the same teachers as I did, hence the stories. I do remember being a little intimidated at first because it was one of the first times I was meeting somebody that made such compelling and honest images. Iva immigrated from former Czechoslovakia in 1982, coming to Montreal and developing her photographic eye. I don’t know when Iva caught the travel bug maybe she was just born with it, regardless her and her cameras have and still capture some of the most interesting places and people.

Iva has a huge body of work. She has traveled around the globe and to many places that I would never dream of going to. Though, whatever the city, village or country she captures the essence of the place and people without judgement. She truly cares about the subjects she photographs. When she recounts her time in some of the places she has visited, there is always this sense of attachement to a family, or particular person that she has spent time with. Her work is her life, a camera constantly around her neck, Iva never stops seeing. I’ve picked some of my favorite images to show here but her website is overloaded with work. The one below makes me think of a Dali-esque painting.

© Iva Zimova - Twilight, Burkhas and Dust

© Iva Zimova - Caucasus

© Iva Zimova - A Czech Microcosm