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In a Shipping Container, Images of the Struggle to Recover in Haiti

  • shipping container
    Photoville: A temporary photography village in Brooklyn, NY from June 22 to July 1, 2012. Here is DPP’s container exhibiting Wyatt Gallery’s “Tent Life: Haiti.” Felix Endara/Open Society Foundations
  • woman and baby
    Vanessa with Newborn Baby, Airport Camp, Haiti. 2010 “Wilson, our translator, took me to his tent next to the airport. He has a white tent with good ventilation and lots of soft light. He lives there with his sister and her newborn daughter. His sister’s husband died in the earthquake. Eight days later their baby was born. On the other hand, Frank, our other translator, only has a tarp and a piece of foam for his family of eight. Wilson’s camp has clean water and latrines provided by the Red Cross, but Frank’s does not. Frank says his daily pay of forty US dollars for being our translator will feed his whole family for a month.” © Wyatt Gallery
  • beauty salon in tent
    Pétionville Camp, Pétionville, Port Au Prince, Haiti. September 2010. Julie Studio Beauté. Many beauty salons were formed within the tent communities after the earthquake. Women wanted to feel some normalcy in their life and it was important to them to still feel pretty and take care of themselves. © Wyatt Gallery

Tomorrow, a park in Brooklyn will transform into Photoville, a free photography village, the main centerpiece of which are exhibits in 35 large shipping containers.    

If you are in New York from June 22 to July 1, I urge you to visit the new photo festival where we are exhibiting work about Haitians who lost their homes during the 2010 earthquake, and who fashioned new shelter in tents.

The Open Society Documentary Photography Project is showing Wyatt Gallery’s “Tent Life: Haiti,” which is featured in our current Moving Walls exhibition. The photographs are testament to the strength and dignity of the Haitian community after the devastating 7.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010 and decimated the city of Port-au-Prince.

While the earthquake occurred more than two years ago, Haiti is still struggling to recover and nearly half a million people continue to live in tents. For this reason, along with the Foundations’ deep commitment to Haiti, we selected Wyatt’s work for our Moving Walls exhibition and thought that bringing it to Photoville would remind the broader public of the ongoing situation.

Even if you’ve seen the Moving Walls exhibit, please come and see these photos again and think about whether the presentation in a shipping container lends it a different meaning. Wyatt will also be speaking on Saturday, June 30th at 2:45.

We are also excited that past Moving Walls photographers Lynsey Addario, Russell Frederick, and Brenda Ann Kenneally will be showing work at Photoville as well as Open Society grantee the Magnum Foundation.

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