HOST Gallery is pleased to announce the opening on 9 March 2010 of Curse of The Black Gold: 50 Years of Oil in the Niger Delta, photographs by Ed Kashi.
“I take on issues that stir my passions about the state of humanity and our world, and I deeply believe in the power of still images to change people’s minds. I’m driven by this fact; that the work of photojournalists and documentary photographers can have a positive impact on the world. The access people give to their lives is precious as well as imperative for this important work to get done. Their openness brings with it a tremendous sense of responsibility to tell the truth but to also honor their stories.”
Curse of the Black Goldtakes a graphic look at the profound cost of oil exploitation in West Africa. Now one of the major suppliers of US oil, Nigeria is the sixth largest producer of oil in the world.
Set against a backdrop of what has been called the scramble for African oil, Curse of Black Gold is the first body of work to document the consequences of a half-century of oil exploration and production in one of the world’s foremost centers of biodiversity. Kashi’s photographs expose the reality of oil’s impact and the absence of sustainable development in its wake, providing a compelling pictorial history of one of the world’s great deltaic areas. The photographs capture local leaders, armed militants, oil workers, and nameless villagers, all of whose fate is inextricably linked, illustrating the paradox of poverty in the midst of plenty. Curse of The Black Gold is a landmark work of historic significance.
Ed Kashi was born in New York City and received a degree in photojournalism from Syracuse University. Kashi’s first major documentary project, a study of the Protestant community in Northern Ireland, garnered him a NEA grant. His book, When The Borders Bleed: The Struggle of the Kurds was the result of his cover story for National Geographic. Kashi has received numerous awards, including the World Press and Pictures of the Year competitions. The author of Aging in America: The Years Ahead (powerHouse Books, 2003), Kashi has also published his work in National Geographic, The New York Times Magazine, Time, Fortune, Geo and Newsweek among others. Kashi lives in New Jersey.
This opening is a private, invite-only event. Curse of the Black Gold runs from 8 March – 3 April 2010 at HOST gallery.
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