Artists join forces to raise awareness of press freedom

A new t-shirt campaign aimed at raising awareness of press freedom and human rights has been launched this month by MOTHER Magazine.

The t-shirts on offer has been designed by three prominent young creatives – namely British artist Ed Atkins, Russian rebel author Slava Mogutin, and Sang Bleu editor Reba Maybury. Their merchandise will be on sale until December 1st, with 100 per cent of profits being divided equally between the Freedom of the Press Foundation, Reporters Without Borders and Kaleidoscope Trust.

Design by Ed Atkins

Design by Ed Atkins

According to a spokesperson for MOTHER, the charities were chosen for their incredible work towards promoting freedom of information, media transparency, and LGBTQ rights.

“These are concepts currently under threat, and we wanted to fight back in some way,” they … Read the rest

Confronting the shocking everyday violence of Honduras

I was born in Honduras, Tegucigalpa in the aftermath of Hurricane Mitch in 1999. A year later, my family moved to Brighton in the UK, where I have since spent most of my life.

From a young age, I’d heard a lot about the problems in Central America – especially in Honduras, which is often called the “most violent country in the world.” Growing up, I couldn’t understand what was driving people to behave this way or where this violence was coming from.

This year, after turning 18, I returned to Honduras for two weeks to find out more about my country of birth. Even though my Spanish is a bit broken and I wear very British clothes, it was only my shock that … Read the rest

The hidden African history captured by one maverick photographer

In 2011, a box of old photographs changed my life. I spend every summer in South Africa but this particular one was difficult because I experienced a lot of violence, including a carjacking which caused damage to one eye.

People in New York wanted me to come home but I knew from experience that something good usually happens in the last week of every visit. I had bought a stack of photographs in Cape Town and my friend’s daughter said,“You know what? I have this collection of negatives I should give you.”

Figure-72
They’d been sitting in a garage for 15, 20 years. I pulled out a few, held them up to the light and started freaking out. They were so strong, even in that form.… Read the rest

Asia’s first major LGBTQ exhibition is opening this week

In a historical move, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei will be the first major-scale public institution in Asia to host an art exhibition entirely focused on the history and struggles faced by the continent’s LGBTQ community.

Spectrosynthesis – Asian LGBTQ Issues and Art Now has been in the works for over two years, and will showcase 51 creations by 22 artists hailing from Taiwan, Singapore, China and Hong Kong, as well as Chinese-American artists based in North America.

The MOCA Taipei website explains: “The exhibition represents the life stories and related issues of the post-war Chinese LGBTQ community as the artworks on view touch upon a profusion of subject matters such as identity, equality, exploitation by mass media, social predicaments, comments on individuals/groups, human desire, … Read the rest

Behind the scenes at America’s new legal cannabis farms

As the daughter of a pot farmer, Kristen Angelo practically grew up in a grow room. The Seattle-based photographer was exposed to cannabis culture at a young age as her family resided on Vashon Island, an enclave of bohemian-living that’s long been associated with guerilla farming. But in the 90s, the Island became swept up in a drug war that ended with Angelo’s father incarcerated in Federal Prison, for what the lead detective considered “the most sophisticated growing operation” he had seen in nearly a decade.

Today, as legislation surrounding cannabis is in a state of flux, Angelo has embraced photography as a way to challenge stigma around the plant. By cutting through the trippy visuals and over-sexed boob/bud shots and instead profiling growers and their … Read the rest

The fabulous NHS nurses demanding to be paid fairly

As the first Prime Minister’s Questions after the long summer recess kicked off inside the House of Commons, just outside the Palace of Westminster this afternoon it was all kicking off too.

Hundreds of nurses converged on Parliament today to demand an end to the 1% public sector pay cap, the latest step in a summer filled with actions led by members of the Royal College of Nursing to have this policy scrapped. The representative body for nurses in the UK says that seven years of tight pay caps have resulted in a real terms pay cut of 14% for the medics on the frontline of the National Health Service.

IMG_9971 IMG_9865

On the grass of Parliament Square, healthcare professionals and their supporters piled on the pressure, as … Read the rest

Laura Pidcock is right, Tory MPs aren’t friendship material

Before I start this article properly, here’s the obligatory disclaimer: some of my best friends are Conservative voters. Well, maybe not best friends exactly, but acquaintances I’m happy spending time with. I sometimes find it hard to understand the assumptions underpinning their worldview, but I’ve spent enough time around Tories (including proper, paid-up party members) to know they aren’t all cruel and spiteful people.

Also, my ex-coalminer grandad votes UKIP. I think I actually do understand most of the assumptions underpinning his worldview and some of them aren’t particularly admirable. I still love him, though, because that’s just how it is with family, isn’t it? You don’t get to choose them.

Friends are different. Throughout your life you encounter people in a range of different situations: … Read the rest

Inside China’s brutally cramped ‘home and work’ spaces

It was the run-down, beat-up back streets that first caught Alina Fedorenko’s attention. Hidden behind Beijing’s impressive high rises and new builds, they were leagues away from the tourist traps typically associated with the city. These streets – which were cramped, claustrophobic, stuck in another time – gave the Ukrainian photographer a rarely seen glimpse into the everyday lives of many Chinese citizens.

“In Beijing’s old quarter, named the Hutong area, people still live life like many years ago,” Alina explains. “Surviving and living here is not easy as many people have relocated to high buildings to have proper sanitation systems, which most of the houses in the Hutong area don’t have. Those who are left have created a beautiful symbiosis of working and living in … Read the rest