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Featured Exhibits /October 24, 2009

Right for Living
Ukrainian Roma village 
Photographs by Arthur Bondar

Arthur Bondar
A portrait of a Roma family in their home. Photo by Arthur Bondar

Photographer Arthur Bondar's essay is about a small village of Ukrainian gypsies near Kiev. It was built in 2005 after the massive flood in western Ukraine. The villagers lost everything: houses, gardens, clothes, documents. The government gave them $50 for compensation-not enough even for food. Today there are 40-50 people living there. Those who stayed have built hybaries (handmade houses). The pieces of carpet, linoleum, and wood keep them warm. They heat their homes with a burzhuika (small oven) or with small handmade fireplaces. They earn money in different ways; cadge near the church, tell fortunes by cards or hands, or simply steal. None of the children have ever been to school. There are no medications and nobody wants to speak with gypsies at the hospital.
Click here to view the exhibit.

My Fellow Americans
First generation Azeri community in Rhode Island
Photographs by Dennis Yermoshin

Dennis Yermoshin
Photographer's uncle at his place of work. Photo by Dennis Yermoshin

This essay is about a reconstruction of a life left behind. It is a portrait of Dennis Yermoshin's family and friends from Azerbaijan; a specific group of people who, due to the failure of the Soviet government, ended up in America. Through these photographs, Yermoshin explores the process of adaptation and the endurance of nostalgia-two unconditional aspects of immigrant life.
Click here to view the exhibit.

The Iron Triangle
A community in New York struggles to earn a living in auto repair shops slated for demolition
Photographs by Kevin Downs

Kevin Downs
Waiting for work in the Iron Triangle. Photo by Kevin Downs

In Corona, Queens, the area right outside of the new Shea Stadium is known as the Iron Triangle. Some call it a junkyard. It can be dangerous to make a living in these chop shops. Young men and women are working to send their kids to school. It is a place that has enabled many generations of immigrant workers to make a living. Some are sending their money back home but others are trying to create a life for their family in the U.S. But now the city is taking the land to build hotels and condominiums. Hundreds of small businesses and 5,000 workers are being forced out of their livelihoods in this part of Queens. Click here to view exhibit.

A document of the world economic crisis
Photographs by Freya Najade

Freya Najade
Photo by Freya Najade

To show the consequences of the slow down in economy, Freya Najade focused on closed down premises. Najade believes these abandoned spaces embody the impact of the crisis on society in general and on individuals specifically. Of particular interest to Najade are spaces in which one finds traces of the previous occupier. Some of the premises seem as if they have just closed down or were left in a hurry. Signs and slogans remind us of good times but also of efforts to advertise their services or products. However, the future of these places, and therefore also of the workers, remains unclear. Click here to view exhibit.

Documentary News

"Climate Change in Our World,"  an exhibit of large-scale color photographs from the book  Earth Under Fire by environmental photojournalist opens to the public at the American Association for the Advancement of Science Headquarters Atrium, Washington DC, beginning November 10.  The show runs through mid-March, 2010. The show is a unique and engaging witness to the effects of global warming today, including solutions and actions that are underway by governments, companies, families and kids.  It is the only comprehensive visual display on climate and energy in Washington during the Senate debate and in advance of the international Copenhagen talks in December. Click here for details.  

About SocialDocumentary.net
SocialDocumentary.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.