Heroin from Afghanistan’s remote mountains makes it’s way onto the streets of Europe and beyond everyday, generating an estimated $60 Billion USD in 2009 alone. It has become an integral part of the world economy and a by-product of modern wars.
At the same time the global economic downturn is accelerating moral, economic and social change amongst the working classes and poverty has never been closer to home. As policy makers deal with these problems what role does love play in these social inequalities, if any?
The Hinterlands and Instant Coffees bring you an evening of talks and discussion with Brenda Ann Kenneally (USA) and Robert Knoth (Netherlands), two dedicated photographers who have been recording these interconnected stories for the past two decades.
The talk takes place from 6.30pm on the 12th July 2012 at The Island, Bridewell St, Bristol
Advance tickets are only £6 and £7.50 on the door.
Brenda Ann Kenneally, Brooklyn, New York
Though I have dedicated the past twenty years as a journalist to exploring the roots of class inequity in America, it has been my own internalization of early social messages that has heightened my awareness of how difficult it is to break the cycle. In 1996 I moved to Brooklyn, NY to attend the graduate program in studio art at New York University. I began photographing the women in my neighborhood. Along with integrating my work as a photographer into my life as a single mother, came the epiphany that the personal is political. In 2000 the work received The W. Eugene Smith Award for Humanistic Photography. I published a book of this work. Money, Power Respect; Pictures of My Neighborhood. The book was given several awards from news organizations. In 2007, I founded www.therawfile.org. as a resource for a community beyond photojournalism. It shaped the goals that I have for my work.
In 2004, I took an assignment in Upstate, New York near where I was born. The story has become a project that has lasted eight years. Upstate Girls documents the coming of age of a community of young women in Post- industrial America. It has won several major journalistic awards and for the first time, an Arts Grant, from New York State. The project has been like photographing the life that I would have had, were it not for photography. The confidence that I have gained from the professional recognition of my work reminds me how transformative encouragement from others can be.
Having gained recognition for his work in some of the world’s worst conflicts areas, in recent years Knoth’s work has seen a shift towards a more documentary and contemporary approach. He now works as an autonomous photographer, often on longer term documentaries. In his work Knoth aims to show the complexity of various social, economical or political issues and the effects they have on the lives of ordinary people.
The project Certificate no. 000358/ , featuring the dramatic fall-out of several nuclear disasters in the former Soviet Union won him much acclaim. Since 2006 the book and exhibition has reached a large audience worldwide. Some of the venues where the work has been shown are the Oxo Gallery in London, Place Des Arts in Montreal, Moscow House of Photography, Center for Contemporary Art in Kiev and the International Photo Festival in Ping Yao.
His most recent project is Poppy, trails of Afghan heroin. The book and audio visual installation provides a powerful narrative about the global impact of Afghan heroin along the main trafficking routes. The work has recently been on display at the Dutch Photo Museum in Rotterdam.
During his career Robert Knoth has won numerous awards including two World Press Awards, a PDN Award, Photo Prize Prague, Premio Miran Hrovatin Award and five Dutch Silver Camera Awards.