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Glenna Gordon April 19, 2012

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Liberia.

Ducor Hotel, Monrovia, Liberia 2010

Glenna Gordon (b.1981, United States) is a freelance documentary photographer who splits her time between West Africa and New York. In addition to her own projects, she also covers news, does work for NGOs, and trains journalists and photographers in Africa. Glenna’s photos have been published in Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, Foreign Policy, among others. Her work from Sierra Leone was accepted into the 2011 Lagos Photo Festival in Nigeria and the PowerHouse gallery in New York. Other projects have been shown in Washington DC as part of Fotoweek DC, where she received second place in the photojournalism and social documentary category. Glenna has also been a grant recipient of the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting for a project on justice in post-war Liberia.

About the Photograph:

‘”The image was taken at the Ducor Hotel in Monrovia, Liberia. It was once a four star hotel owned by the Inter Continental chain, but during Liberia’s civil war fell into disrepair and was inhabited by thousands of squatters fleeing from rural areas and urban fighting. They were later cleared out in 2010 when the Libyans won a bid to rehabilitate the hotel. Renovation began, but stopped when violence broke out in Libya. It was clearly once a beautiful spot, and still had its own kind of beauty. I went there often while I lived in Liberia, ostensibly to take pictures, but also for this beautiful, sweeping view of Monrovia and because I kind of  fell in love with the building. It’s one of those buildings that is significant to the history of a place, its own role changing with the times. Liberia’s future is unclear – there was a relatively peaceful election recently and the president is well liked abroad, but animosities and grievances haven’t been forgotten or forgiven. The Ducor’s future is uncertain as well and will continue to be tied up with Liberia’s growth and progress, or lack thereof.”

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