If you’re in London this summer there’s an outdoor exhibition that should not be missed. Located close to the majestic Tower Bridge and a few steps away from the performing area known as The Scoop, sit a remarkable number of images shot through the attentive lens of photojournalist Tom Stoddart. They detail his travel into often perilous territories in search of stories to tell and people to inspire.
The photos feature shots taken for the Health Care in Danger Campaign, an initiative by the International Committee of the Red Cross focusing on the senseless violence against people and institutions who provide assistance to people in need. It is campaigns:worth:sharing‘s Campaign of the Month for August 2012 because of its startling imagery, poignant text and its relevance to the international social, cultural and political landscape at the moment.
Many of the photos on display for the exhibition portray situations of terrible suffering in countries like Bosnia, China and various territories in Africa. All photos are thought-provoking and a good number show the extreme poverty, vulnerability or helplessness of the subjects photographed.
Perhaps most importantly, the photos relate the lives of real people with real faces and real names – people whose existence revolves around conflict, war, poverty and destruction.
A few photos made me want to crawl into a cave and not resurface before the world reclaims some semblance of humanity.
My favourite shot is one showing a woman walking resiliently and defiantly on as she passes soldiers in her home town on her way to work. She exudes confidence with her every stride and sends a stronger message with her actions than she could ever do with her words.
The below shot summarises Tom Stoddart’s career while relaying his words about the significance of the exhibition being held in London as host of the Olympic Games 2012.
The exhibition is on until Tuesday 11 September 2012.
The Health Care in Danger Campaign is being pushed forward by means of the following posters. A PDF document providing further explanation can be found here.