Photo of the Week | 10.08.09 | Inner Mongolia

Posted by on Aug 10, 2009 in Editorial Photography | 2 Comments
Sat on the steps of a yurt, a tourist adjusts her traditional mongolian clothing. Traditional life has all but disappeared on the Inner Mongolian Grasslands, along with much of the grass which has been damaged by overgrazing. 2009

Sat on the steps of a yurt, a tourist adjusts her traditional mongolian clothing. Traditional life has all but disappeared on the Inner Mongolian Grasslands, along with much of the grass in places, which has been damaged by overgrazing. 2009

This week’s ‘Photo of the Week’ was taken in Inner Mongolia earlier this year, during my 6-week trip for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. I have chosen this photo this week because on Wednesday, I am heading back to Inner Mongolia to take part in the International Conference of Science & Technology on Desertification Control. I have been invited there to speak to the 150+ scientists, experts and businessmen attending, on the subject of desertification and my coverage of the issue for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. As I type this post, I have some 50 prints being printed, all to be shown as an exhibition in Wulanhaote, where the conference is being hosted.

I am really looking forward to this conference as it will be a great opportunity to bring my photography and work on desertification to a new audience and an important one at that. As photographers, we want people to see our images. We want as many people as possible to see them. This is great, but sometimes a targeted approach is equally good. Many of China’s leading experts on desertification and environmental issues shall be at this conference, therefore I have an opportunity to emphasise to them the importance of photography and its role in communicating scientific and environmental issues to the public.

I shall be sure to post from the conference and update about some of the key issues being discussed. I shall also post images of the final hanging of the exhibition. Thanks again to all who offered advice on the hanging, both here on the blog and over at Lightstalkers.

2 Comments

  1. Jere
    August 14, 2009

    Imagine my surprise a few years back findin out that there was a place called “Inner Mongolia.” I’ve never been there. Had never really thought about it that much. But I must tell you, I find the photo powerful. The dwelling may fit some image I had for Inner Mongolia. The traditional clothing would fit. But the land does not. No grasses to speak of. I find the photo sad. The loss of a culture. The loss of an environment.

    Reply
    • sgallagher
      August 16, 2009

      Thanks again for the thoughts Jere. These are exactly the emotions I feel in this image too. The grasslands seem to be a lonely place, devoid of grass and devoid of traditional life. If you haven’t seen it already, please have a look at my multimedia piece, produced for Pulitzer, where you can see many more images from Inner Mongolia: http://www.gallagher-photo.com/content/popup/growing_sands/index.html

      Reply

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