October 28, 2017

Photojournalism Now: Friday Round Up 27th October, 2017

This week Photojournalism Now: Friday Round Up comes from New York City and features a brilliant exhibition by Debi Cornwall - Welcome to Camp America, Inside Guantánamo Bay - at Steven Kasher Gallery, as well as Flint, a story by LaToya Ruby Frazier who was a keynote speaker at Photo Plus Expo in New York yesterday.

Debi Cornwall - Welcome to Camp America, Inside Guantánamo Bay

Debi Cornwall, Compliant Detainee Media Room, Camp 5, U.S. Naval Station Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, 2014

“My goal in making this work was to invite people to look at Guantánamo again after almost 16 years. Most of us have stopped looking,” says Debi Cornwall whose first New York solo exhibition - Welcome to Camp America, Inside Guantánamo Bay - opened last night at Steven Kasher Gallery.

Welcome to Camp America, Inside Guantánamo Bay, is described as “a vivid and disorienting probe into the U.S. Naval Station on Cuba known as “Gitmo.” Cornwall was given access after eight months under strict conditions including the requirement to process and print her medium format film on the base, under the watch of military censors.

Labelled by former President Barack Obama as the place where “we tortured some folks”, Guantánamo Bay through Cornwall’s lens questions the so-called war on terror and “examines the compromises we make between decency and fear in the post-9/11 era.”

Welcome to Camp America, Inside Guantánamo Bay is a fascinating expose segmented into three bodies of work: Gitmo at Home, Gitmo at Play and Gitmo on Sale. The exhibition comprises 29 large-scale colour photographs as well as formerly classified documents.

Debi Cornwall, Comfort Items, Camp 5, U.S. Naval Station Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, 2015

Debi Cornwall, Liberty Center Band Room, U.S. Naval Station Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, 2015

Debi Cornwall, Recreation Pen, Camp Echo, U.S. Naval Station Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, 201

Debi Cornwall, Murat, Turkish German (Germany)
Refugee counselor
Held: 4 years, 7 months, 22 days
Released: August 24, 2006
Charges: never filed
Containerdorf, Refugee housing
Bremen, Germany, 2015

Debi Cornwall
Anonymous Chinese Uighur (Albania)
Held: 4 years, 7 months Transferred to Albania: May 5, 2006 
Charges: never filed
Tirana, Albania, 2015

Debi Cornwall 
Hamza, Tunisian (Slovakia 2015) 
Held: 12 years, 11 months, 19 days 
Cleared: January 12, 2009 
Transferred to Slovakia: November 20, 2014 
Charges never filed
By the River Hron, Slovakia, 2015

Panel Discussion:
Saturday 28 October 2.30pm to 5pm 
Steven Kasher Gallery and the Center for Constitutional Justice will host a panel discussion with Debi Cornwall, J. Wells Dixon and Mark Fallon. Moderated by ICP's Fred Ritchin. The panel will discuss Guantánamo Bay, art, and social justice. The event is free but seating is very limited, please RSVP here

Exhibition on until 22nd December
Steven Kasher Gallery
515 W 26th St.,
New York

All images courtesy of Steven Kasher Gallery.

Social Issues: 
LaToya Ruby Frazier - Flint

At Photo Plus Expo in New York this week I attended the keynote speech Women in Photography featuring Sue Bryce, Barbara Davidson and LaToya Ruby Frazier. I was particularly taken with Frazier's expose on Flint, Michigan where the horrendous poisoning of that community's water is literally killing its residents. Others have tackled Flint also, including Matt Black as part of his extraordinary Geography of Poverty.

The photo (below) is from a feature in Rolling Stone magazine and shows the difference between the water in Flint and the water in Detroit, both cities of Michigan. (Photographer unnamed)

(C) LaToya Ruby Frazier

I hadn't heard Frazier speak before. She gave a powerful, inspirational discussion on the power of photography and the passion that drives her was evident in her voice. Here are some of her images featured in Elle magazine's feature on Flint, a feature that Frazier said was unexpected; she never thought a women's fashion mag would have any interest in social issues. It ran over 12 pages.

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