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Felicia Webb May 9, 2008

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in England.
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“The voice constantly whirrs round in my head :
‘I’m too fat, too big, taking up too much space.”’ Natalie

Felicia Webb is a documentary photographer engaged in humanistic projects on various social issues. She has worked all over the world including Africa, Asia, Latin American, USA and Europe. Her work has been published by the Sunday Times Magazine, New York Times Magazine, Time, Newsweek, Le Monde , Telegraph Magazine, Independent Magazine, among others. She has worked for several charities and NGOs including Christian Aid, Save the Children, Oxfam, and others. Her projects have received many awards including World Press Photo, Pictures of the Year International, the NPPA/Nikon Documentary Sabbatical Grant, the Visa D’Or Magazine, a Hasselblad Foundation grant and the World Press Masterclass. Her work has been exhibited in the USA, UK, Norway, Sweden, Holland and France.

About the Photograph:

For the past three and a half years, Felicia Webb has closely followed the lives of a handful of Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa sufferers. Eating disorders have become an increasingly pervasive malady in the United Kingdom and the United States, and it has been Webb’s mission to portray these conditions in a truthful, personal, and sensitive light. Her photographic essay “Nil By Mouth” couples personal testimony with compelling portraiture. Through this presentation, she aims to raise awareness about the severity and complexity of the illnesses, dispel many of its common misconceptions, and to encourage and educate sufferers, youth, and politicians to be proactive and resourceful in their encounters with eating disorders.

“I worked on this project for three years and it means such a lot to me. I met all the people I photographed through the Eating Disorders Association (now called Beat) and from the first time I visited them I was amazed at how generous they were in revealing their lives to me. It was a huge responsibility, and worry at times, because obviously I didn’t want the project in any way to exacerbate their illness and having read a great deal about eating disorders sometimes I felt like I was walking through a field of landmines. But we were able to resolve any potential difficulties through friendship, talking and trust, and I really encouraged everyone to tell me if there was ever something they felt uncomfortable with.”

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