lawrence sumulong – burying the lead

 

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Lawrence Sumulong

Burying the Lead

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Following Typhoon Haiyan, 60 Filipino families were forced to move into Leyte Provincial Jail after being left homeless and destitute. For close to a year, they lived alongside their incarcerated relatives, some of whom were accused of rape and homicide. I gained access to the prison and verified that families continued to live in the jail after 6 months.

Since this series was shot, the families have long since left the jail, but their fates are unknown to me. I began to question where these images fit into my own life as a result. It disturbed me how quickly news breaks and inevitably disappears while one’s images remain interred in the archive.

For an upcoming survey and exhibition of contemporary Filipino photographers in Manila, I was presented with the opportunity to show new work, but decided to move backwards, revisit this series, and create one of a kind ambrotypes (photographs on glass) using the 19th century wet-plate collodion process out of my original digital files with the help of The Penumbra Foundation.

Everything about this series is outdated or rather obscure from the aesthetic to the location itself. As captions, I’ve used traditional Filipino riddles in various dialects that I’ve collected.

As opposed to an exercise engaging in nostalgia, my decisions emerged from a need to consecrate and imbue these seemingly generic and direct images of Filipino faces with the fragility and unseen idiosyncrasies of that traumatic moment in time.

 

Bio

Lawrence Sumulong (b. 1987) is an emerging photographer based in New York City. He received his B.A. from Grinnell College in Iowa where he studied creative writing and won the James Norman Hall Aspiring Writer Award as well as the Lorabel Richardson American Academy of Poets Prize.

His work has appeared in The GroundTruth Project, a global journalism initiative supported by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, Le Monde’s M Magazine, the Milk Gallery, The New Yorker: Photo Booth, The New York Times, NPR, and Verve: The New Breed of Documentary Photographers.

His postcard series for the publication, Abe’s Penny, is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art Library and the Brooklyn Museum Library.

He is the photo editor at Jazz at Lincoln Center.

 

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Lawrence Sumulong

greg kahn – the sleep of reason

 

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Greg Kahn

The Sleep of Reason

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The window on the high-speed train to Naples, Italy, frames an idyllic picture – rolling hills, sun-covered vineyards, and fertile farmland. But beneath the fertile soil of this region lies something insidious, an amalgam of industrial, hospital and nuclear waste that is spiking cancer rates and spreading alarm across Southern Italy.

The setting is Campania, Italy, and the Naples coastline, former playground of Roman emperors. The region’s natural beauty has been spoiled by the trash on its streets. Piles of garbage line the highways, farmland, and playgrounds. Heaps of waste under overpasses, filled with industrial by-products, are torched in large fires with billowing poisonous black smoke, a practice perfected by organized crime. Now, after decades of these practices, the consequences are emerging – reports of tumors, scientific studies suggesting links, testimony of mob turncoats pointing to millions of tons of dumping. Everyone is scared, inhabiting what feels likes a living graveyard.

 

Bio

Greg Kahn (b. 1981) is an American documentary photographer. Kahn grew up in a small coastal town in Rhode Island, and attended The George Washington University in Washington D.C. In August of 2012, Kahn co-founded GRAIN Images with his wife Lexey, and colleague Tristan Spinski.

Kahn’s work concentrates on issues that shape personal and cultural identity. His clients include NationalGeographic.com, The New York Times, Nike, stern, The Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post Magazine. In 2011, Kahn was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for his work on the foreclosure crisis in Florida and in 2014, with The Sleep Of Reason, he was shortlisted for the Emerging Photographer Fund.

 

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Greg Kahn

jill corona – creature of the west

 

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Jill Corona

Creature Of The West

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There is a creature that dwells in the warm desert of the West, one with searing red eyes that blink slow & steadily like a long hot drag of a cigarette burning in the night. It’s tentacle-like arms are generations of families that have lived and died in a rusty basin where copper runs deep, Saguaro is plentiful and the summers are blistering hot. It is a pulsing, living (and dying) congregation of community and people, with both despair and hope strengthening it’s strong-reaching roots. Within it’s clutches are stories of life and survival, as well as death, decay and environmental deterioration.

The images and work in Creature of the West are an attempt to capture and preserve what’s left of a dying American smelter town.

 

Bio

I am a photographer currently living near Phoenix, but was born & raised in the small mining community of San Pedro near Hayden, Arizona. I have been documenting the crumbling presence of my hometown as it struggles with environmental issues (high cancer rates and toxic clean-ups) as well as social, community and economic obstacles (drugs, crime, destruction). I travel from Phoenix to San Pedro as often as possible endeavoring to record (with photographs) the deterioration of the people, environment and community spirit of this beloved, mostly Hispanic barrio as it faces a questionable future.

 This work was shortlisted for the Emerging Photographer Fund 2014.

allison davis o’keefe – mother: daughter; daughter: mother

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Allison Davis O’Keefe

Mother: Daughter; Daughter: Mother

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“Mother: Daughter; Daughter: Mother” is an ongoing personal project about the awkward place between being a daughter and having a daughter.

For the first year and a half of my daughters life, I didn’t take any photos.

Being alone with a child was a depth of loneliness I had never known.

and yet I was still a daughter – a role that hadn’t changed.

switching between the two dynamics and having the worlds collide is confusing and awkward.

every time I am with my mother I revert to a childlike place of needing to feel that I belong

But I am a mother too so where do I fit?

One day, when my daughter was about two and a half, I found a plastic “toy” camera in my office and some expired film.

This is where the project started.

It continues as I use the camera to navigate my joy and discomfort.

 

Bio

Allison Davis O’Keefe is a graduate of Claremont McKenna College, the International Center of Photography, and the Eddie Adams Workshop.

Her career in journalism began with CBS New in New York and Washington, DC covering the US Congress, presidential campaigns and other major events around the United States.

In 2012 Allison released her first book titled, One Goal, which was awarded the prestigious book prize by the PDN Photo Annual in 2013.

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Allison Davis O’Keefe

 

 

Musings

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BEACH GAMES

For me this is a lazy Sunday afternoon. Seems I don’t get many lazy Sunday afternoons. Yet I am cherishing this one. It’s cool outside, I have a fire going, and I’m just talking to my cats. They do not seem to be listening, which is fine.

I have been shooting quite a bit in Rio since 2010. First with a NatGeo piece on Rio. Straight up documentary photojournalism. Then with my book, (based on a true story), which does not mention “Rio”  at all. Why? Because my personal life was mixed in the with pure documentary and I did not want anyone to think (based on a true story) was a “report” about Rio de Janeiro. It was all documentary, but it was not journalism.

Now with the upcoming BeachGames zine (photos here) I went all out and didn’t make any attempt at mixing a reportage coverage with the life I was living. So BeachGames is on the same stage as (based on a true story) except that it is a true story. Again, not journalism at all, yet a personal diary of my 3 months of shooting within the last year. Black & white. Conventional wisdom told me not to go back to the same well. Suicide creatively? Trying to do the same thing twice?  Yet I felt like doing it, so I did it. No other justifications. I will take the critique.

Yet now I am done. Finished with my photographic romance with Rio. Will I return to Rio? Sure I will. For vacation, for workshops, to see my good Carioca friends. Yet I know when I am finished shooting something. In this case, it took two books to finish. Both with different moods, both with different things to say. Both taking me away from conventional reporting and closer to the novella mentality, where I think I will stay. In the end, novelists interest me more than reporters. I see a type of truth in fiction. All barriers lifted. Nobody really makes things up. You cannot write  about or photograph something well if you have not lived it. I will leave straight reportage for others who do it so well.

After years of using one place as fodder for work, when its over there is some sort of post shoot nostalgia. A sweet exhaustion. The way we all feel after we have put everything into something. Knowing we did all we could do, yet always wondering if we could have done more. Yet I feel I really squeezed the lemon. No more juice left. Time to move on. Cuba? Cartagena? or just my own Outer Banks world? I cannot know right now.

Ok time to go take a hike in the dunes. Late afternoon light beckons. My cats will follow me. Rio seems far away. Yet always always near.

-david alan harvey-

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