Damion Berger was born in London, England in 1978. Damion's traditional Public School education took a change of course when at the age of 17, on the back of receiving his first camera, he wrote to famed fashion photographer Helmut Newton and was subsequently offered a post as his assistant/student based in Monaco. During his initiation into the world of fashion, he studied business at the University of Southern Europe in Monaco before deciding to commit full-time to photography, moving to New York in 1997 to attend Parsons School of Design. Of his first days at Parsons he says, "Learning about the history of photography and being introduced to the work of such masters as Cartier-Bresson, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Frank and Kertesz was such a revelation that my interest in fashion disappeared at once. Sometime during the projection of that first tray of slides, I realized just how rich and diverse life is and that all I needed was a curious eye and a camera discreet enough to explore it, so I traded my Hasselblad for a Leica and hit the streets". Damion used most of his time out of class to travel, photographing in countries such as Burma, Vietnam, Thailand, and Morocco producing separate portfolios of work entitled 'Asia in Passing' and 'Morocco; In the Shadow of the Djellaba'. In 1999, for a documentary photography class with former Magnum photographer Charles Harbutt, Damion stumbled upon a project that would keep him busy long after graduation. Walking home one evening after spending the day shooting in the upper east side of Manhattan, he became intrigued by the people dressed in black-tie heading to the smart hotels to attend balls, charity galas and other formal parties. "I jumped into a cab to rush home, got dressed up and quickly returned, camera in hand to follow the guests into the Grand Ballrooms as if I was invited". The resulting project entitled 'R.S.V.P.' saw Damion 'crash' and 'bluff' his way through New York society parties for the rest of his time at Parsons. During the week, when not attending class, he Interned at Magnum Photos sifting through the photographs occasionally getting the opportunity to show some of his own. After graduating with a BFA in 2001, enthused by the positive response to RSVP from friends and fellow photographers, Damion continued to make use of his black-tie, covering all kinds of formal, black-tie parties from New York to New Delhi. Acquiring accreditation with increased frequency, he began to travel to other capitals of culture and wealth around the world, documenting a milieu defined by wealth and tradition, infiltrating these circles of privilege that for most of us are unfamiliar, veiled behind closed doors. He continues to work extensively on the project with a view to publishing the work as a book towards the end of 2004. Damion has also been getting 'wet', photographing underwater in swimming pools in Monaco, the Côte d'Azur and Greece during the summer months when children are on holiday and the large public pools are teeming with life. 'In the Deep End' is a series of candid black and white photographs that have a weightless, playful quality capturing children and adults as they play and swim in the luminous water of busy holiday pools on the Mediterranean. These photographs were featured in PDN Magazine's Photo Annual Issue in 2003. In March 2003, during a brief trip to Havana, Damion met a young man and his sister whose family had survived the collapse of a large section of the roof and floor of their home in Old Havana during a rain storm that occurred a few days earlier. Over the proceeding days he photographed the family coming to terms with the damage to their home. The resulting picture essay, 'Havana: Living in the ruins of Socialism' documents one typical Cuban family dealing with the adversity of a worsening condition, a condition that to one extent or another is shared by much of the population. "For me it was a chance to witness first-hand just one small aspect of what it's like to live in Castro's Cuba. Having seen book after book of beautiful photographs of Cuban interiors and colorful street scenes filled with old-fashioned cars, I felt that the reality of Cuban life was being largely overlooked. Cuba is of course a very beautiful place, but as a photographer I believe we have a responsibility to document what we see and not just what we want to see." Since the end of 2001, Damion Berger's work has been exhibited in two solo shows in co-operation with Max Mara in New York, in a group exhibition /auction called 'Moments of Intimacy' at Sotherby's, New York and at the Festival OFF of Photojournalism in Perpignan, France. His work has been published in a number of magazines including American Photo, Popular Photography and PDN Magazine. Over the next few months his work will be featured in Black & White Magazine, PDN and Hotshoe in the UK and in September 2004 Damion will be exhibiting his work at the Leica Gallery, New York.