I have still yet to open the OCA box of goodies and get started with this module, but I am genuinely excited for this section of the OCA photography courses as it encompasses so much of what I admire about photography.
In creating the blog I wanted an image that would stand out, also one that could be cropped wide and narrow. It was fascinating looking through Google images at a raft of sites and practitioners; that is where I stumbled upon the image used in the header of this blog. It was taken by Vivek Singh [b 1980] as part of a series entitled "Beyond Chicken's Neck".
Vivek Singh is from Haryana, India. Originally he started in television news production, with photography taking over around 2006 when he worked for Local Indian publications in Delhi. He was the winner of the Manuel Rivera Grant for documentary photography in 2013. He continues to work for many major papers and media companies globally as a photo journalist
The series was taken in a North Eastern Province of India known as the Siliguri Corridor or Chicken's Neck, an area consisting of Seven States that are far from peaceful. Vivkek describes this area as one of violence spanning decades that has claimed thousands of lives, with many of the survivors left with scars taking decades to heal.
The series describes the mindless murder and rape of adults, children and the old during the early months of 2014. The images are very vivid and capture a community that is almost desolate, dispensing its own tribal justice, cut off from the civilisation of modern India.
Vivek's work is predominantly B&W and quite raw, that is probably what I admire about it. Many parts of the images are out of focus, including the header but it still works and is extremely powerful. Sadly there is no mention of what the gathering was in the header image perhaps that is left up to the imagination of the viewer.
Below I have selected my favourite three images from the series, they seem to call out the pain that is the never ending circle of their violent lives. The series and all of Vivek's work can call be viewed at: