Featured Exhibit/May 11, 2009
Cockle Pickers in Praia Grande, Brazil
Photographs by Luiz Santos
Children play an important role in the economy of Praia Grande, Brazil. Photo by Luiz Santos
Cockle Pickers was produced by photographer Luiz Santos in Praia Grande, a small village in Brazil's Northeast, in the state of Bahia. The main economic activity in Praia Grande is cockle and crab picking. Nobody knows for certain how many people live there because many young men and women leave the island for irregular periods of time for the cities in search of job opportunities.
Cockle picking is very popular because it can be done by almost anyone, including children. In fact, they play an important role in the local economy. Many of them don't go to school in order to support their families.
There is no medical service or even a reliable transport system on the island, which is twenty minutes by boat from a major city. The infrastructure is very poor.
Since this essay was produced, in February 2007, 50 tons of fish have mysteriously perished leaving thousands of people without ways to feed for themselves as the authorities have imposed serious restrictions on their activities. View the Exhibit.
Life Inside an IDP Camp
Photographs by Mike Odongkara
Acholi woman in an Internal Displaced Persons camp in northern Uganda. Photo by Mike Odongkara
Northern Uganda is the worst place on earth to be a child today, says a former United Nations Under-Secretary General for Children in Armed Conflicts. According to Oxfam, the rate of violent death in northern Uganda is three times worse than Iraq's. Since 1996, the government has herded more than 1.7 million people in northern Uganda into the Internal Displaced Persons (IDP) camps.
The World Health Organization reports that in northern Uganda over 1,000 people die each week of starvation and preventable diseases. Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) describes the level of suffering in northern Uganda as "an emergency out of control." As a Catholic missionary priest who has worked in northern Uganda for half a century describes it, "everything Acholi is dying." View the Exhibit.
New York Photo Festival, May 13-19
SDN is proud to be a media sponsor of the New York Photo Festival, curated by William A. Ewing, Chris Boot, Jody Quon, and Jon Levy. These world-renowned curators all bring their personal visions in contemporary photography to the main pavilions of the 2009 edition of The New York Photo Festival. More information.
Submit Your Photo to "We Are All Photographers Now!"
As part of his curated exhibition "All over the Place!" at the NYPH 09, William A Ewing celebrates photography's diversity by offering an interactive component that any photographer can participate in. By using special software developed by the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, anyone may submit a photograph via a website that is stored in a server in Switzerland, sent to a projector located in The powerHouse Arena (37 Main Street, DUMBO, Brooklyn), and then broadcast for all Festival attendees to see. Simultaneously, as each image, labeled with the photographer's name and home country, flashes on the screen, a camera will photograph the projection in its environment as proof of its inclusion and email it to each photographer.
Ewing's exhibition "All over the Place!" features the work of historical documentary photography figures such as Ernst Haas, Jacob Holdt, Edward Steichen, and contemporary photographers Manolis Baboussis, Matthieu Gafsou, Oliver Godow, Tiina Itkonen, Anna Lehmann-Brauns, Juraj Lipscher, Virginie Otth, Philipp Schaerer,Joni Sternbach, Robert Walker and Patrick Weidmann. What could unite Edward Steichen's seminal exhibition "The Family of Man", with Jacob Holdt's unblinking, unsparing view of American life a decade or two later? What are the lessons to be learned from unearthing early Ernst Haas color imagery? What do Haas, Holdt, and Steichen have to do with younger talents on the roster?
About SocialDocumentary.netSocialDocumentary.net is a new website for photographers, NGOs, journalists, editors, and students to create and explore documentary websites investigating critical issues facing the world today. Recent exhibits have explored oil workers in the Niger River Delta, male sex workers in India, Central American immigrant women during their journey north, and Iraqi and Afghan refugees in Greece. Click here to view all of the exhibits.