Thursday 18 March 2010

Rankin picture postcard: From Congo with Love

The week before last I finally made it down to the Southbank Centre and had a peruse of the project Rankin undertook in conjunction with Oxfam; From Congo with Love. Last year Rankin visited a small town on the Ruzizi Plain in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where the population had doubled in size in a matter of weeks. At the time of his visit, tens of thousands of people had only just settled having fled from neighboring towns amid fresh outbreaks of violence.
The overwhelming generosity shown by complete strangers in the face of terror deeply inspired Rankin, who chose to centre his images on the love and solidarity found in the midst of one of the world’s worst conflict zones.
The above image was by far my absolute favourite photo from the exhibition. I loved this group of friends (who are a drumming band) looking as though they were having a great time. I remember when I first saw it I was amazed by how happy they all were and I'm not sure how to express it in words, but their bond leapt out of the picture and just made me realise how important friends and family are above everything else.
From Congo with Love is a free exhibition at the Southbank Centre (outside the National Theatre) ending on 11th April 2010.

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