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War photographs on exhibit

art and culture Updated: Sep 25, 2010 14:43 IST
Sharin Bhatti
Sharin Bhatti
Hindustan Times
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City based photographer Ryan Lobo is taking war to the gallery. He is displaying a series of photographs titled

War and Forgiveness

in Kolkata, in October.

Lobo captures controversial subjects with empathy and insight. The photographer will be showcasing frames from his travels through war-ravaged nations like Iraq, Afghanistan and Liberia. Lobo, in his own words, experienced “other people’s sufferings at close quarters and immersed myself in stories.”

He says, “My collection is expressed in three stages. Liberia, a war criminal’s search for redemption in the aftermath of a civil war; the Taliban backed heroin trade in Afghanistan; and Baghdad, a city under conflict and the lives of people in war time."

Lobo shot mostly in black and white and the exhibit appears as a moving montage of torment, bloodshed and peace with close-ups of people against a backdrop of ruins.

Also a filmmaker, Lobo defines his sights as literal moving images and stories. “War enjoys exciting press in our storytelling tradition. Photographs of men firing guns and charging forward make for great selling visuals. People who have truly suffered do not find it difficult to forgive and this was my experience. And it captures beautifully on a frame,” he says.

Lobo has also traveled the world in search ofimages of humanity and has made 70 films on subjects such a Papua New Guinean tribal initiation rites and maximum-security prisons. His films have been aired on The Oprah Winfrey Show.