Artist: Ploutarcos Haloftis

During the restoration of the park near my house , I saw a statue , wrapped with plastic .This reminded me somehow the works of Christo . At the same time , the way shadows and light were playing on the new surface , gave me the impression that a new sculpture had accidentaly been created . Many walks and many full memory cards later , I ended with a body of about 25 “ final “ photographs . It was about time : some days later the restoration ended and the statue took its initial form again .

Ploutarcos Haloftis

Artist: Roger Colombik Bruce

Roger Colombik Bruce

My work as a photographer reflects my research in the development of civil societies. Rooted in the tradition of documentary studies, the projects are presented in contemporary formats that include large-scale photography (banners), video, writings and intervention. The works are often presented in public places to achieve a maximum impact for community discourse on important issues. My projects are collaborative for I strongly believe that working with young artists from a given community provides for a more genuine reflection about that community. (And a much richer experience for myself.) A recent project is Sacar Adelante (To Bring Forward) and involves working with childhood development agencies in Ecuador. These programs enable children to come off the streets and into a situation where shelter, security and education are provided without any heavy handed religious indoctrination. This project is ongoing and is intended as an open source program to be utilized at similar developmental programs throughout Latin America. Another new project just underway is Dem Dritten Das Brot! (To the Third-Bread) that examines issues of cultural heritage and migration with ethnic German communities in western Romania.

Life born in a Slum

Artist: Saikat Mojumder / Dhaka Bangladesh

Sajila is a working mother living in the Korail slum in Dhaka city. She has her husband, mother-in-law and three children (two daughters and a son) in her family. Her husband cannot afford all the maintenance of the family alone, Sajila works as a day labourer to support him.

The story begins when Sajila is expecting again. The poverty-ridden family could not be happy with the possibility to have the family even more extended; nonetheless, Sajila continues nurturing her hope to have another male-child this time.

Quite understandably, it was not possible for Sajila to have the extra care or medical support an expecting mother should get. The family will starve if she does not work, so she continues with her heavy work as a day-labourer. This was definitely the last thing a pregnant woman should go through.

However, I began my photo shoot on Sajila when she was four-months pregnant. She lives in a small, suffocating and unhealthy room in the Korail slum, which is surrounded by lake. As it is in most of the slums, there is also no doctor or medical service available here in this slum. There are indeed some midwives helping the pregnant mothers in the slum though. But their ability is very much questionable and giving birth to a child under their supervision is unsafe, it even leads the mothers and children to death often.

The reason behind the high death rate at childbirth is most of the childbirth in our country is maintained by untrained midwives.

Due to economical insolvency and lack of proper medical service, Sajila also decides to give birth to her child under the supervision of a midwife. Sajila believes, if she has God by her side, she will make it safely, for all her three children have been born this way.

Her economical condition was even worse during her pregnancy and she even had to starve for several days. Even though, Sajila did not forget to take advice from the midwife about the dos and don’ts. Finally on the due date, she gives birth to her child under the guidance of that very midwife. Without any modern facilities or medicines, in an unhealthy atmosphere, Sajila has her baby boy delivered normally. It might sound incredible to many, but Sajila walks herself home with her son only after an hour