Ian Willms (b. 1985) is a photographic storyteller and member of Panos Pictures. His visual practice resides between long form documentary and contemporary photography. The inevitability of passing time and compromise are common threads that run throughout his longterm photo essays, which strive to convey the emotional landscape through visual lyricism.
Ian's pacifist Mennonite ancestors fled violent persecution in Russia in 1923 before settling in Canada. As a child, Ian was raised by his independent, Bahá'í, feminist mother in a subsidized apartment building for at-risk women. These experiences shaped his empathetic and socially concerned disposition, which informs his work today.
His works have garnered support and accolades from The Eugene Smith Fund, World Press Photo, Sony World Photography Awards, Pictures of the Year International, The Canada Council for the Arts, the Lange-Taylor Prize et al, and been shown in exhibitions around the world.
Ian lives in Toronto and is available for editorial assignments worldwide. He is represented by NAMARA for commercial enquiries and print sales.
(Photo by Joshua Best)