Photo credits: © 2003 Carl DeKeyser/Magnum
, a seasoned Magnum Studios photographer, produced a visually lavish but not very believable photo book of Siberian Prison camps entitled Zona - Siberian Prison Camps
| The photographer, who took a visit by invitation of the Russian government, stated that he was impressed by what he saw
, not questioning where the "hidden stuff" rested | While
I'm not one to judge his credulity, and while I certainly recognize his concerns that about if he spoke up, he would not have seen as much as he had, it's disenheartening that ~ after a point ~ he didn't even seem to make the effort | The photos are now 4 to 5 years old; the book published late in 2003 | It's nevertheless worth looking at if not actually purchasing |
One reviewer, Carole nagger, chided DeKeyser thusly "... Hell could be painted in beautiful colors, and often is – in everyday life and in prison camps. It is, nevertheless, hell, and de Keyzer chose neither to go beyond the surface nor to do his job as a photographer and as a human being. No one said that job was easy.
Touring institutions is an exercise is in caution and
quiet discernment | This photo project reminded me of a time when I'd gone with a group of officials to examine a mental hospitals for a quality review | One one occasion, not only was the strong smell of fresh paint permeating the halls, but one of the reviewers, a woman of some social prominence, brushed against a wall with her dark sable fur coat, and found it now covered with a layer of white paint | So, my advice is, look for the truth beyond the whitewash, and if the place just looks too good to believed, then don't believe it | And if the residents [patients, clients, inmates ~ they'll tell you what's the most honest term to use] can't speak with y ou at length, then just watch their faces | As in the photo provided here, one grimace speaks volumes |