Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Poverty Paste: Series 1/3

My latest project is taking black and white photographs of my experiences in the slums of Manila and pasting them in all corners of Hong Kong. Beside each of the photographs, there is an explanation or a story that accompanies the picture. The descriptions that are paired with the photos are in both English and Mandarin and the whole set totals 30 photographs.
(Thanks Noz for the translations)

The idea behind this was to raise awareness about poverty while giving the viewer a better opportunity to connect to the subject through the personal descriptions, experiences and stories listed on the smaller pieces of paper.

The density of Hong Kong and the money that floats around the city everyday makes it an ideal location for an outdoor gallery that deals with poverty as the subject. There are many parts of Hong Kong that experience their fair share of poverty-related issues, but for many of the areas that I targeted, people have a surplus of income and are susceptible to getting caught up in a world that is dominated by materialistic goods, one that makes it difficult for people to realize how lucky some of us have it.

People in Poverty
With limited space in the city for low-income housing and even less room to make a financial impact and move up the socio-economic ladder, many families who have come to Manila are forced to live in makeshift houses near the railroad tracks. This is a very dangerous life as many people are killed every year on the city’s railroad tracks.
因缺乏空間收留低收入家庭, 也因著更貧乏的空間去爭取財政影響,或爭取社會階級的提升,很多家庭來到馬尼拉,
卻被迫住鄰近鐵路軌的臨時屋.這是很危險的, 每年,多人更命喪鐵路軌.

Photograph: 15/30

People in Poverty
The slums offer little to no hope for the children who are forced to grow up in them. This child collects anything that may be of value from the garbage that is sent from the city to this garbage dump located south of Manila. On an average day, this child will make around 90 pesos ($16 HKD, $2 USD)


Photograph: 21/30

People in Poverty
Hunger is a serious issue on the streets of Manila. Many of the youths walk the street hungry and malnourished not knowing where their next source of food will be from. This child enjoys a plate of spaghetti provided from thehomeschoolproject.org, an organization that teaches street kids art and feeds them a meal at the end of the day.

Photograph: 9/30

With numerous families living and being killed around the heavily traveled train tracks that cut through the city of Manila, the government moved many of the families to housing facilities in Cavite. The problem that many faced was that the government forgot to create jobs along with the allocation of the families. These children play in a swimming pool that has never had water in it and many of the houses in the background have been abandoned in search of new jobs.


Photograph: 5/30

People in Poverty
With a fresh load of garbage dumped in front of the anxious workers, there is a rush to see who can find anything worth resale. Workers make, on average 150 pesos ($ 3.50 USD, $ 27 HKD) a day and must battle hunger, temperatures that soar above +35 and other workers just to make enough money to survive.

當一大堆的廢物倒下,緊張的工人立即湧入其中,看能否在當中拾得有價值的東西再轉售,要知道,他們的日子不好過,要捱餓,還需抵得住35度高溫下工作,而每日只賺取150 披索(約3.5元美金,27港元),其他人更只能賺夠糊口。

Photograph: 4/30

People in Poverty
This family photo that is still missing 3 children was taken on Roxas Blvd in Manila. These people came to Manila from the Muslim dominated island of Mindanao in search of work. Banji, the wife makes 90 pesos a day ($ 16 HKD, $ 2 USD) her husband makes up to 150 pesos a day hustling bananas, cold drinks and other miscellaneous merchandise to drivers stopped in the middle of the chaotic traffic. This income of 240 pesos ($43 HKD, $5.50 USD) is intended to feed 5 children and 3 adults.

這幅家庭合照還欠了三位家庭成員。他們由穆斯林主管的綿蘭老搬到馬尼拉來找工作。Banji太太每天賺得90 披索(約2元美金,16港元),他丈夫則賺到150 披索(約3.5元美金,27港元),他的工作是在烏煙障氣的馬路中售賣香蕉,凍飲及其他雜物予停車的司機。他們的收入240 披索(約5.5元美金,43港元)原本用作支撐起一家三大五小的。照片攝於馬尼拉大道 Roxas Blvd。

Photograph: 6/30

Living in a garbage dump is a tough life. The people not only have to endure the scorching heat and the rancid smell of the decaying trash on a day to day basis, but they also only have one form of shelter, a small tarp that has been constructed into a makeshift tent. There are 6 people living in this cramped space, without a fan or any electricity, but somehow they still have hope for a brighter future.

Photograph: 17/30

Many people leave their homes in the provinces of the Philippines in search of a better, more prosperous life in the capital, Manila. The reality for most is that Manila itself has a 27% unemployment rate and jobs are very scarce to come by even for people with degrees from colleges and university. So, many find any job that they can get and live in places such as these which are built on any available land that can sustain life.

在菲律賓,很多人離鄉別井,走到首都馬尼拉,去尋覓更好的將來. 事實上,菲律賓的失業率達到27%,連大學生都很難找到工作.因此, 很多人有工就做,而且住在這些有空地就建起來的屋子渡日.

Photograph: 11/30

People in Poverty

Under this bridge lived around 100 people. Displaced from the Typhoon Ondoy, they had few options or help provided to them by the government. This is one of many new settlements that occurred after the typhoon. The polluted stream below serves as a magnet for germs and diseases that plague the local community.
在這橋下,活了一百人。經過颱風Ondoy 的洗禮,他們沒有多大的選擇,又沒有政府的支援,這裏成為許多人的新據點。他們污染了水流,醞釀成為細菌及病患的溫床,最終害了這個社區的居民。
Photograph: 3/30

People in Poverty

With few options for young children to escape the harsh reality of life on the streets of Manila, basketball is a favorite pastime that fuels the dreams of young children hoping to be the next PBA star and help their family escape the streets.
Photograph: 2/30

People in Poverty
Along with basketball, boxing is also viewed as a way to escape the poverty. In the Southern Island of Mindanao, home of Manny Paquiao, boxing has helped many youth find hope for a brighter future in Manila.

Photograph: 7/30

A father of 5, Banji’s husband came from Mindanao in search of a more prosperous life. He walks the chaotic streets of Manila selling snacks, cold drink and other items to drivers stopped in traffic. He endures long hours, toxic pollutants and dangerous traffic to earn 150 pesos a day ($ 3.50 USD, $ 27 HKD)

Photograph: 23/30

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