In honor of World Cancer Day and the millions of people world-wide who suffer from this disease, SDN would like to highlight three compelling exhibits that deal with the survivors and victims of cancer both here in the United States and in the developing world. 

Glenn Ruga
Founder and Director

The Faces of Breast Cancer
Photographs by Pete Byron
Originally posted to SDN in January 2010.

Peter Byron

Photograph by Pete Byron.  


Gretchen announced to us she had breast cancer. She was going to have a double mastectomy. A few days after she was home I went over for a visit.


She began to describe to me how this Alien was living in her body, and her body was no longer hers. Then she began to describe the way the doctor marked her up for the surgery, and the details that followed.


The first words out of my mouth were you should let me photograph it. Gretchen's reply was "Do you want to. Yes?... So a week later I went over and this was the beginning of my Breast Cancer project. She took the photos to her support groups and we found some amazing women who were willing to be immortalized.  


The strength these women exhibited is amazing. They beat the disease, and their lives go on richer then ever.


View the exhibit.  

The Battle We Didn't Choose: My Wife's Fight with Breast Cancer
Photographs by Angelo Merendino
Originally posted to SDN in September 2011.

Angelo Merendino

Photograph by Angelo Merendino. "Jen had just been hospitalized and she wanted to beat the chemotherapy to the punch. This wasn't the first time that I had to shave her head but that didn't make it any easier. 5-3-2011"


In September of 2007, Angelo Merendino married the girl of his dreams. Five months later, Jennifer was diagnosed with breast cancer. Numb and in a state of disbelief, Angelo and Jennifer entered the world of cancer. Just after their first anniversary they were told that Jennifer was free of cancer. Cancer, however, opted again to interrupt their life.  


Some two years after Jen's initial diagnosis, they received news that the breast cancer had metastasized to her liver and bones.  


Editor's note: Jennifer passed away on December 22, 2011.  


View the exhibit.  

Cancer Patients in Uttar Pradesh, India

Photographs by Abhinava Goswami
Originally posted to SDN in April 2011.

Abhinava Goswami

Photograph by Abhinava Goswami.  Rame Devi, Uttar Pradesh, India


View the exhibit.  

SDN News

Magnum Foundation Emergency Fund Announces 2012 Grant Recipients          

The 2012 Magnum Foundation Emergency Fund photographers were selected because they proposed to report on stories not visible on the media's map. Working in a range of narrative styles, these photographers demonstrated that they are committed to producing in-depth work that they will distribute to targeted audiences across multiple media platforms.  


SDN Congratulates PhotoPhilanthropy Activist Award Winners     
PhotoPhilanthropy has announced the recipients of the 2011 PhotoPhilanthropy Activist Award. With the Activist Award, PhotoPhilanthropy recognizes outstanding projects by photographers working in collaboration with non-profit organizations. Awards are given in three categories: Professional, Student, and Amateur. The winning photographers and non-profit organizations are:  


Professional, $15,000: Inge Kathleen Hooker on behalf of The International Center of Bowling Green
Student, $2,000: Oxana Onipko on behalf of Pravozashita
Amateur, $2,000: Paolo Patruno on behalf of Seva Canada  


This year's winning projects support the work of non-profit organizations from around the globe, from Malawi, to Russia to Kentucky. The winning entry in the professional category is a story of a Burmese refugee family of six, two parents and four young boys. In January of 2009, they traveled from a Thai refugee camp to resettle in the United States. The story begins the day the family arrived in the United States and follows them as they try to settle and adapt to their very new, strange life, in rural USA. Read more.    


The Michael P. Smith Fund for Documentary Photography Now Accepting Applications

The Michael P. Smith Fund For Documentary Photography (MPS Fund) was created by the New Orleans Photo Alliance to honor the life and work of Michael P. Smith, one of New Orleans' most legendary and beloved documentary photographers.  The MPS Fund awards one $5000 grant annually to a Gulf Coast photographer whose work combines artistic excellence and a sustained commitment to a long-term cultural documentary project.


Both emerging and established photographers residing in the Gulf Coast states of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida are eligible to apply. The subject matter for the proposed project is not limited to the Gulf Coast region.


Submissions for the Michael P. Smith Fund for Documentary Photography 2012 grant will be accepted from February 1, 2012 to March 30, 2012. To apply.   

Two Exhibits Open at Photographic Resource Center in Boston 
February 9 - March 24, 2012 
PRC Gallery, 832 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

Global Health in Focus 
Photographs by Kristen Ashburn, Dominic Chavez, and David Rochkind

David Rochkind 

Photo by David Rochkind. A doctor visits a patient at the Group of TB Hospitals in Mumbai during daily rounds. Mumbai, India.

This exhibit focuses on three of the greatest health challenges the world community faces today: HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and access to clean water. Through arresting images, photographers Kristen Ashburn, Dominic Chavez, and David Rochkind document the heavy toll that global health issues take on the developing world. Their poignant photographs invite us beyond the grim, faceless statistics and bring us in close contact with people-mothers, fathers, children-confronted by enormous hardship. Read more.  



Photographs by Willard Traub

Recovery is a photographic meditation on affliction and rehabilitation by Willard Traub. The work reflects the artist's own experiences battling a rare form of blood cancer, drawing on the strength of his talents as a photographer. Recovery began when Traub was diagnosed with cancer in 2005, and examines his treatment, hospitalization, and recovery process. The images, combined with personal prose and poetry, provide an intimate and hopeful commentary on a disease that signifies much larger life issues. Read more. 

About is a website for photographers, NGOs, journalists, editors, and students to create and explore documentary exhibits 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.