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Carl Bower October 27, 2010

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in United States.
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Diane undergoes a bone scan. Chevy Chase, Maryland

Carl Bower (b.1966, USA) is a freelance photographer based in Denver. His personal work addresses issues of identity in the face of adverse social conditions, and his photographs have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, TIME, Newsweek, and the Sunday Times Magazine of London. His project on Colombian beauty pageants was shown at the LOOKbetween and Palm Springs photo festivals, featured in Burn and the New York Times LENS blog, received the Blue Earth Alliance Prize for Best Project Photography and was a finalist for the New York Photo Festival Book Award and Photolucida’s Critical Mass Book Award. His series on one woman’s experience with breast cancer received a Clarion Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

About the Photograph:

“This image is from Diane’s Story, a series about a close friend’s bout with breast cancer, her physical and emotional recovery, and the disease’s eventual reoccurrence. When first diagnosed, she was bombarded by the details of clinical trials, conflicting advice and inspirational platitudes. She wanted a realistic sense of the experience before her as a way to prepare herself, but could find nothing. Partly to wrestle something positive out of the situation and partly for the illusion of control, we began to document her experience so that other women could have the insight Diane sought but could not find. This photo was made after her mastectomies and chemotherapy, at a time when she was in the process of reconstruction. Although Diane was deemed a “survivor”, regular tests looking for hints of metastasis were a constant reminder that cancer is forever in remission, never completely gone. She was undergoing a bone scan as her oncologist looked for suspiciously high densities of marrow, a possible sign that the cancer had metastasized. Radiology reports carried the weight of life verdicts, and she said every test felt like a game of Russian roulette.”

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