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Arief Priyono February 20, 2014

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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Lirboyo Islamic boarding school. East Java, Indonesia 2012

Arief Priyono (b. 1982, Indonesia) studied photography at the Antara School of Journalism in Jakarta. His work has been published in The Independent, The Telegraph, Sydney Morning Herald, Der Spiegel, The Wall Street Journal and ABC News among others. In 2010 he was commissioned by Human Rights Watch International to document political prisoners in the Republic of the South Molucas (RMS). In 2013 he received a scholarship to attend Training of Trainers at Erasmus Huis, Dutch Cultural Centre in Jakarta. Arief  is currently working on an ongoing project about former migrant workers in Indonesia. His work is distributed by Getty Images and Zuma Press.

About the Photograph:

“This photograph is part of my project Indo Islam. Indonesia is the world’s most populous Islamic country where about 85 percent of the country’s almost 200 million people are Muslim. This religious school teaches students moderate Islam in an attempt to reduce radical Islam in the country. Since the Bali bombings and the September 11 tragedy, Indonesia as a Muslim country has been in the spotlight because of terrorism. Islamic boarding schools have been accused of being terrorist training centers. In fact, it is only a small part of Indonesia. Lirboyo Islamic boarding school, is one of the largest traditional Islamic schools in Indonesia. They teach a peaceful Islam, and are strongly opposed to terrorism. They have at least 10,000 students. Every year about 1,000 students are sent to various regions in Indonesia to conduct de-radicalization.”

Andri Tambunan February 1, 2013

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia, Papua.
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Demonstration of condom usage at a public market in Jayapura, capital of Papua, 2009

Andri Tambunan (b. 1981, Indonesia) moved to the United States at age 10. He received his degree in Photography from Sacramento State University with an emphasis in Fine Art. After years of working in the corporate world he quit his job and decided to travel the world. In November 2008 he was in Mumbai during the terrorist attacks. His first instinct was “to grab my cameras and document the series of events that unfolded around me.” His photographs have received recognition from Pictures of the Year International (POYi) Emerging Vision Incentive, Reminders Project Asian Photographers Grant, and the International Photography Awards (IPA). In 2012,  Against All Odds was exhibited at the Angkor Photo Festival and was a Magnum Emergency Fund nomination. Andri is based in Jakarta.

About the Photograph:

“This photo is from my long-term project Against All Odds which I investigated the HIV/AIDS epidemic among indigenous Papuans. Currently Papua has the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence in Indonesia (15 times the national average) and outside of Africa. Although they say that HIV/AIDS does not discriminate, in Papua the epidemic follows along the fault lines of race: about three-quarters of those infected are indigenous Papuans. Ultimately, indigenous Papuans are living and dying in the midst of the fastest growing epidemic in Asia. Against All Odds uses images and text to explore some of the reasons why indigenous Papuans are contracting HIV, including limited economic opportunities, lack of HIV/AIDS education and awareness, insufficient access to health services, inadequate support, discrimination, and stigma.”

“In Papua, it is assumed almost all transmission of HIV occurs through sexual encounters. Thus, the consistent use of condoms is understood as one of the most effective ways to reduce or prevent infection.. Condom usage is often opposed or disregarded by religious and community leaders and is considered taboo. As a result, the use of condoms is low and condoms are frequently associated with sin, misconduct, and shame. Most people are embarrassed to buy condoms even when they are available. It is still very difficult to obtain a condom in most locations. Because of low condom education and awareness, many people in Papua don’t know how to use condoms or where to go to obtain them. Most importantly they don’t understand the benefit of condom usage in reducing or preventing STDs and HIV infection.”

Rony Zakaria October 20, 2011

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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Temple Offering. Bali 2009

Rony Zakaria (b. 1984, Indonesia) is a documentary photographer based in Indonesia. He studied Mathematics and Computer Science in college before starting his career as a photographer. Rony has been recognized with awards and grants from the National Press Photographers Association ‘Best of Photojournalism’, the Mochtar Lubis Award and the United Nations FAO Indonesia Grant. He has worked with many leading publications including TIME Asia, Monocle, The New York Times, National Geographic Indonesia among others. He is a current fellow at Asian Center for Journalism, Philippines.

About the Photograph:

“Between 2008-2010 I visited many mountains and coastlines in Indonesia, mostly in Java and Bali. I was documenting the people and communities living on the slopes of the volcanoes and sea shores for a project called Men, Mountains and the Sea. In late 2009 I was in Bali and witnessed this ceremony, a ritual to cleanse bad spirits. Recently the Hindu temple was broken into by a thief, stealing ruby stones attached on a sacred masked stored in the temple. A Balinese man was holding a goose while circling the temple with others. They were performing a ritual before sacrificing the offerings which included dogs, chickens and geese. Later the offerings was taken along with the mask to be cleansed in the sea. Balinese believe evil spirits live in the sea and need to be released there.”

Ed Wray February 28, 2011

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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Boy in Spiderman Mask, Jakarta Indonesia 2006

Ed Wray (b.1962, USA) holds a degree in International Relations, a background which has given him a special interest in understanding how the news of the day becomes history. “I’ve been fortunate to have observed and photographed over the past 12 years some of the most interesting and critical issues in Asia, from Afghanistan to Fiji: coups, people’s power movements, armed conflict, natural disasters, and the ordinary lives of people living in these rapidly changing times. One of the things that most interests me about both history and photography are the ‘in between’ states where people are affected by the energies that change a situation from what was to what will be.” Over the course of Ed’s career, his work has been featured regularly in magazines and newspapers such as Time, Newsweek, Stern, Monocle, The New York Times, Le Monde, among others.

About the Photograph:

“I’ve often wondered why so many people give up their uncrowded country lives for an uncertain existence in an urban slum. The chances of striking it rich are staggeringly small. So when I read a UN statistic showing that more people were living in cities than in the countryside for the first time in human history, I decided to have a look at what people really face when they come to a big city without any resources but abundant hope. I was working in an area of Jakarta where hundreds of very poor people raise their families in makeshift tarp and plywood homes within several feet of a busy railroad track. Its one of the few places where no one tells them they can’t live there. I had been working there for several days and was just on my way back home from the railroad tracks when I saw this young boy with his spiderman mask sleeping against a wall on a cardboard box. For me, he embodied the answer to the question of why so many leave the countryside for big cities. Simply put, the dream of a better life is a stronger pull than the reality which consumes most people who come to the big city from the countryside.”

Sim Chi Yin November 15, 2010

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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Java, Indonesia, December 2008

Sim Chi Yin (b.1978,  Singapore) is a freelance photographer based in Beijing, China. This year, she was one of two photographers worldwide to receive a Magnum Foundation scholarship for a summer programme in documentary photography and human rights at New York University. She was a finalist for the Ian Parry Award in 1999. She photographed and reported on Indonesian women migrant workers’ trials and triumphs between 2005 and 2009. That work is being published as a book by the United Nations’ International Labour Organization. As a foreign correspondent for The Straits Times, Singapore’s largest English-language daily, Chi Yin won several awards for her pictures and text stories. She recently left the paper to get back to photography.

About the Photograph:

“On a wing and a prayer: Faith and luck are just about all Siti Cholifah, 27, has as she prepares to leave her two-year-old little girl and home yet again to work overseas as a domestic maid. It would be her third stint away in as many years. Year after year, tens of thousands of Indonesian women go the same way, keeping their families afloat by taking care of other people’s households in the richer countries of Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Siti, who had already been a domestic in Singapore and Saudi Arabia, planned to go to Singapore or Hong Kong to work once her daughter was a little older. It’s for my child’s future. And our house is not even completed, she said, sitting on a worn sofa in her home of bare cement floors, walls and roof beams.” (more…)

Jonas Bendiksen October 31, 2008

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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Kids playing on top of water mains. Jakarta, Indonesia, 2007

Jonas Bendiksen (b. 1977, Norway) began his career at the age of 19 as an intern at Magnum’s London office, before leaving for Russia to pursue his own work as a photojournalist. Throughout the several years he spent there, Jonas photographed stories from the fringes of the former Soviet Union, a project that was published as the book Satellites (2006). Bendiksen has received numerous awards, including the 2003 Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography, New York, and second place in the Daily Life Stories for World Press Photo, as well as first prize in the Pictures of the Year International Awards. His documentary of life in a Nairobi slum, Kibera, published in the Paris Review, won a National Magazine Award in 2007. His editorial clients include National Geographic, Geo, Newsweek, The Sunday Times Magazine, The Telegraph Magazine and the many others.

About the Photograph:

In 2005, with a grant from the Alicia Patterson Foundation, Jonas started working on The Places We Live, a project on the growth of urban slums across the world, which combines still photography, projections and voice recordings to create three-dimensional installations. A book, also called ‘The Places We Live’, is being published in seven languages to coincide with the Oslo exhibition in June 2008.

Justin Mott May 29, 2008

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Indonesia.
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mott_java.jpg
Java, Indonesia. 2007

Justin Mott is a native of Rhode Island with a journalism background from San Francisco State University. Justin received the Greg Robinson Memorial Award, given to the College Photographer of the Year for San Francisco and the Bay Area. In 2007 he was accepted into the Eddie Adams Workshop in New York and the University Missouri Photo Workshop. Justin has been working in SE Asia since 2005 and currently resides in Hanoi, Vietnam. He is represented by WPN. Justin is also co-founder of On the Road Media with producer/reporter Laura Lo Forti. His personal projects and assignment work has been published in Time, Newsweek, New York Times, Business Week, Geo, The and various other international magazines. Justin recently won The Marty Forscher Fellowship Humanistic Photography Award.

About the Photograph:

“I was in Central Java on an assignment for the Times to do a story on Javanese Mysticism. While I was there we also covered the 100th bird flu case, Suharto’s funeral, and a story about two feuding princes fighting for the throne. The mysticism story was challenging visually because floating daggers and levitation is hard to come by. So I searched for symbols and objects that hold meaning. I came across an albino buffalo which is considered by some to be sacred. The manure is even used by people who believe it will yield successful crops.”

Editors note: Jason was one of the first photographers I contacted after beginning Verve Photo. His interview at The Travel Photographer is a candid account of his working methods in Vietnam.

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