ISSUE 1, 2013
Immeasurable I See Red
How Do You See
A Whole Lot Of Love 1
ISSUE 1, 2013
ABOUT: The ARGUS is a student-run, non-profit, visual journalism magazine dedicated to showcasing studentsâ€™ investigations and unique perspectives of local and international issues. DECLARATION All opinions and views expressed within are those of the authors and do not represet those of the editorial board or QCA, Griffith University. CONTRIBUTORS: We will always welcome anyone who feels they can contribute to the exciting future of our magazine be it through material or expertise. Please pitch your ideas only [no pictures please] to firstname.lastname@example.org. COPYRIGHT: All content is copyright of the contributors and must not be copied or reproduced without permission of the creators. FIND US: www.theargus.net.au www.facebook.com/THEARGUSQCA twitter:@theargus_qca Subscribe to our RSS feed for new issues and content. 2
Letter from the Editor Dear Reader, Welcome to the first edition of the Argus in 2013. Half a year has gone since the Argus was converted into an online magazine format, and this yearâ€™s editorial staff has been working on further improving the layout, with the aim to complement our stories and make the readerâ€™s experience even more immersive. The new team consists of editors from various cultural backgrounds and experiences, and with every staff change there is a change in culture. Elin Fjelldal Managing Editor
This semester our main focus has been on broadening the Argus platform, opening up to contributors from overseas and encouraging new readers to get involved with the Argus. By running international stories, we hope to engage more people from other areas of interest. However, our main task is to publish by and for students, from a journalistic perspective, hoping to discover new talent and great bodies of work, and sharing it all with a larger audience than these storytellers may have been able to reach on their own. Most importantly, these are stories we have chosen to publish because they need to be told. In this issue, we continue reporting on social issues and injustice. We present four stories from Bangladesh, exploring the lives and challenges faced by people who live in the majority world. We also present captivating images of travel photographer Matthew Littlewood, from his adventures around the world. This issue also contains several multimedia stories, from graduate students as well as current students at QCA. This issue is the largest published so far into the Argusâ€™ history, and we are very proud of our efforts. Lastly, on behalf of the whole staff, I would like to thank executive editor Heather Faulkner and previous managing editor Yoko Lance for sharing their experiences and supervising the production of our latest issue, ensuring that we were getting ahead and continuing to improve the magazine. I would also like to especially thank all new contributors for their work. I hope these stories will influence, educate and inspire readers and emerging practitioners to become involved with the Argus, and continue further growth. Elin Fjelldal Managing Editor, the ARGUS
THE editorial TEAM
Heather Faulkner Exceutive Editor
Yoko Lance Deputy Editor
Therese Jensen Art Director
Alex Swinton Picture Editor
Brittany Peters Picture Editor
Monique Montfroy Assignment Editor
Leesa Connelly Mulitmedia Editor
Nicole Konsten Text/ listings
Garry Tan Mulitmedia Editor
THE editorial TEAM
Sharna Hupfeld Marketing Director
Lauran Kessler Marketing Director
contents AUSTRALIA IMMEASURABLE
IN THAT MOMENT
A WHOLE LOT OF LOVE
BENJI’S BIRTH STORY
IT IS WHAT IT IS
BENEATH THE NEON LIGHTS
I SEE RED
GLOBAL HOW DO YOU SEE
LIFE ON HOLD
AT THE END OF THE ROAD
VANCOUVER’S ‘OLD’ CHINATOWN: STILL HERE
A selection of the best single-image submissions
immeasurable Elle Irvine/ARGUS www.elleirvine.com
FOR WHAT MUST BE THE MILLIONTH TIME, I hear the sentence more likely to provoke infinite rage than any other, “I would never have guessed you were anorexic”. Always uttered with an incredulous smile and a fatherly pat on the shoulder or a squeeze of the arm. Despite the other party meaning no harm by this statement, it is guaranteed to throw the majority of those of us diagnosed completely off kilter. The second most common statement that pops up to slap me in the face; “If only I could just give you some of my extra weight!”, usually accompanied by a jovial wink and a playful nudge to the ribcage. Though both of these statements may appear to be fairly innocuous, they are heavily weighted (excuse the pun) with connotations, and an assumption that eating disorders begin with weight loss and end with the achievement of a healthy weight. To reduce the entire experience of being diagnosed with a life-threatening mental illness down into one quantifiable number is incredibly insulting. Unfortunately however, most people simply don’t know any better. Too many people have read the incessant articles on celebrity eating disorders- “Stars Plummet to new LowScary Skinny Anorexia Fears!”, too many people have watched documentaries on eating disorders in which anorexics and bulimics alike cry and baulk at weight gain, and scream that they are getting fat. The truth is, weight loss is a symptom of eating disorders, a by-product of a carefully constructed mental prison. It is not the cause of the problem. 10
My desire to highlight this psychological torment is the reason I began ‘Immeasurable’. As I flicked through previous artist’s works documenting eating disorders, I was disturbed to note that almost every practitioner allows a focus on weight, on numbers on a scale, on calorie intake. While this is undeniably an important aspect of the lived experience of an eating disorder, it in no way reflects the complex phenomena at play in the lives of those diagnosed. When I began work on Immeasurable, I chose to exclude any mention of calorie intake, weights or numbers. Instead I have asked participants to reveal their perceptions of the psychological experience of an eating disorder. Each portrait is a collaborative construction of the participant’s ‘headspace’ throughout their illness. The stories that came from this project show the extreme psychological torment, the sense of futility and hopelessness that comes from being trapped in such a destructive mental environment. These stories represent a complex experience that is, sadly, occurring all over Australia and internationally. The Butterfly Foundation’s annual report conservatively estimates over 900,000 people in Australia were living with an eating disorder in 2012. Those diagnosed experienced double the mortality rate of the general population, and those diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa (as opposed to Bulimia Nervosa and other disorders) had a mortality rate of 5.86 times the average population. Understanding and awareness of the psychological aspects of theses illnesses is desperately needed in order to facilitate better access and support for individuals and families.
I’m 40. I can see outside but i can’t reach it. People can see me. I’m exposed i’m alone. I’m repulsive and i disgust myself. this will never end. 11
For information about support and points of contact in your state: http://www.nedc.com.au/helplines The Butterfly Foundation : http://thebutterflyfoundation.org.au/ Lifeline: http://www.lifeline.org.au/ The Eating Disorder Helpline: 1300 550 236 or email@example.com 25
Poles Apart David Vaney/ARGUS
PHOTODOCUMENTARIAN DAVID VANEY first met Christopher Talbot in 2005 at the Heron Island Research Station, on a marine neuroscience course; David as an instructor and Chris as a final-year undergraduate majoring in marine biology. Chris recently graduated with his PhD, having published four papers in scientific journals. Since then Chris’ life has changed drastically. He currently has a new career as a pole-dance instructor at the Pure Pole Academy in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley. In addition, Chris is a self-described body-transformation specialist, fitness model and pole-dance performer. Poles Apart describes Chris’ journey from being someone who was not very fit, transforming into a body-building competitor and model.
Kyle’s life Garry Tan/ARGUS
KYLE IS FROM CHINA, and this is his first year in Australia, studying international tourism and hotel management away from home. Studying and working consume most of Kyle’s time. A non-native English speaker, he needs to practice his English everyday, finish his assignments and prepare for exams. On top of all that he is also a housekeeper in a hotel. This is hard work. He has to use strong chemicals that are very bad for his health, especially his hands. He would rather not work here, but has no choice as he needs to cover his living expenses and tuition fees, despite relying heavily on his family’s support. This story reflects the loneliness and isolation that can be part of an international students’ life whilst studying abroad.
In that moment Grant Scott/ARGUS grantscott.com.au MULTIMEDIA
THERE ARE SOME ASPECTS of car culture that are rarely shown in a positive light. Drifting, and in particular the youths involved in drifting, are often seen in a negative light, and it is rare to see positive coverage of this culture. Jason Murray has been drifting for seven years. My story is an in-depth look into what this culture means to one individual, and how this culture is his life, rather than a mere hobby. The title â€œIn That Momentâ€? refers to the moment of euphoria felt whilst driving. This makes the problems in life seem completely insignificant. There is a constant battle between this rush and the life we are all expected to live, which can become a cage of sorts.
I Am Libby Best/ARGUS libbybestphotography.com.au
“When I was about 10 years old i wrote mum a letter asking her why kids stare. When i gave it to her, she just burst into tears” - Trish Jackson
â€œMY father broke down and sobbed and sobbed when he saw his newborn daughter the first timeâ€? - Trish Jackson 34
“When i was at school, my mother came up every lunch time to take me to the toilet” - Trish Jackson 35
â€œThis grossly disabled child, should she marry, would have considereble difficulty in rearing a familyâ€? - Orthopaedic Surgeon m.ch., orth, f.r.a.c.s 1 st november 1973 36
“The kindest thing you could do to her is to smother her while she is sleeping” - Hospital nurse Townswille 37
â€œ Mum took the pill the day before it was taken off the shelves. She panicked and rang her gp and found out that he had destroyed all of her medical records as well as those of the rest of the family. he even denied that our family had been patients at the clinicâ€? - Trish Jackson
A whole lot of love Natalie Mariell Elholm/ARGUS
LOOKING AT A CHILD, many associations come to mind. We think of the future, of their future and of all the possibilities that this future could hold. However when a child is born with a disability our expectations for them are automatically lowered. Does special needs equate to small potential? I want to create awareness and challenge our perception of difference. This is a story about Grace, a little girl with Down Syndrome, and how, with the support of her family and help from therapists she is working towards independence and reaching her full potential. With early intervention, education, health care and community support, anything is possible. People with Down Syndrome are people first. We need to embrace difference and never underestimate the gifts that every individual has to offer.
Benji’s Birth Story Libby Best/ARGUS libbybestphotography.com.au MULTIMEDIA
BEFORE THE 1960S, it was not the norm for expectant fathers to be present in the birth suite to witness the birth of their child. For many centuries, the birthing process was perceived to be women’s business. Today, it is common for the father to feel a sense of helplessness during the labour and birth of their child. They believe that there is little they can do except for providing emotional and physical support to their partner. Benji’s birth story gave me an insight into my husband’s role at the birth of our twins. It was like deja vu, I had so many questions for my husband.
It is what it is Nikki Lingwood/ARGUS
MARLENA KATENE IS AN AVERAGE YOUNG WOMAN with the usual dreams, hopes and fears. Marlena also has what she calls a “unique point of difference”. Due to complications during birth, Marlena was born with a form of Cerebral Palsy. It causes her body to constantly move. She is wheel chair bound and communicates non-verbally. Cerebral Palsy is a lifelong disability. Like many disabilities, it is often misunderstood. While it can result in intellectual disabilities, it doesn’t always. For people like Marlena it is frustrating that just because she communicates in a different way people assume that she is “dumb”. This is a story about a woman with a sense of humour, living life to the fullest, grateful that she can interact and be a part of the world around her. Nikki Lingwood created this project with Marlena for her Individual Project in her graduating year - 2012.
Towfiq, 25, surrounded by strangers, salutes in an apparent display of patriotism. Unable to afford proper medical care he lost both of this legs at a young age. 48
Platform Cory Wright/ARGUS
AS A PASSENGER one rarely pauses to give much thought to the station in which he or she is arriving or departing. The station is arguably the most forgettable aspect of travel, the location in which the passenger must pass through in order to get to their destination. Perhaps food is purchased, a toilet is used, or directions are required, but these banal occurrences rarely warrant any lasting thought, especially of the station itself. For some however, this facility is home. In Bangladesh, a country of 160 million people â€˜someâ€™ is many, the majority of them women and children. The cold tile benches are beds, the piles of rotting rubbish -if properly collected and sorted- are the only source of income. Entire families raise their children here, teaching them to sort and collect recyclable plastic and paper in return for a dismal twenty Taka (0.25 AUD) per kilogram.
This series shows a reality that should not be ignored, as many of us would rather do. This is the story for those who live in a place that is so easy for others to forget, surviving on things that others throw away.
I offer my sincere thanks to the students of Pathshala Media Academy in Dhaka. For three weeks they acted as our tour guides, interpreters, and in some cases, security guards, all while producing their own work. I would also like to thank David Lloyd, Shehab Uddin, and Alan Hill for their tremendous efforts in organising and executing a fantastic experience. Finally, I would like to thank those featured in this series for allowing me continued access to their daily lives enabling me to tell their stories, and to the people of Bangladesh. I am humbled by your hospitality, generosity, and selflessness.
Momina 8, is one of many children who seek refuge and shelter at the station. She collects recyclables during the day to buy food. She can expect 15-20 Tk (0.19-0.25 AUD) per kg for paper and plastic bottles. 54
Beneath the Neon Lights Louis Lim/ARGUS louislzm.com
WALKING THROUGH A CRACKED glass door, mended with tape, I enter a room fogged with cigarette smoke. Inside, groups of adolescent males crowd around the dimly lit snooker tables, watching each contestant ‘strut their stuff ’. Other than a passion for cricket, the next big thing for the youth is snooker. Every night, the guys gather at a pool hall for a few snooker matches. The winner gets the glory, while the loser pays for the cost of the game. Wandering around the streets of Dargah Gate, Sylhet, I meet a guy name Fahad. Fahad, 25 years of age, has lived in this town in Bangladesh all his life, and his family has lived in the area for over a century. Our first encounter is at his grandparents’ place, where his grandma invited
me into her house for a cup of tea. Through a brief conversation, I come to understand that Fahad comes from a well-off family and has no need to financially support himself. He has no work or study to keep him busy. I’m curious about the culture that Fahad lives in, and ask him to show me his daily life. Back home in Brisbane, my leisure time involves watching movies, catching up with friends at the pub and doing Tai Chi with a group of grannies. In Bangladesh, more than fifty percent of males between the ages of 18 to 30 are thought to be involved with drugs. For those who want to avoid drug use, such as Fahad, the snooker club is a sanctuary to kill time. Through the time spent with Fahad, I come to understand the male rituals of Sylhet.
Fahad, 25 62
Misbah, 20 63
As part of the groupâ€™s ritual, Rahi and his friends gather at their local hawker stall for a cup of tea after the snooker match. 64
Showing off to the camera, Fahad puffs out a large amount of cigarette smoke, fogging his surrounding. 65
â€˜i see redâ€™ Libby Best/Argus libbybestphotography.com.au
BEING A MOTHER MYSELF, I feel an overwhelming sense of justice that these women are able to have their babies in the presence of other women. Bangladesh is predominantly a manâ€™s world and many women have a low status in the household, in the stores and in life in general. Only half of the mothers in Bangladesh receive antenatal care from skilled professionals, let alone have the choice of a female doctor. Maternal and infant mortality rates in Australia are one of the lowest in the world with only 7 deaths per 100,000 births. In Bangladesh it is a different story. At the Sylhet Red Crescent Maternity Hospital and Child Welfare clinic women pay 20,000 taka, the equivalent $250 in Australian dollars, a sum that is beyond the means of the every day Bangladeshi woman, to cover medical costs and a private room. The reason many women pay this huge sum is because this hospital allows the mothers to be cared for by a predominantly female medical staff.
Dr Sanjida, one of the female doctors who works in the hospital tells me that the mortality rate has been reduced by 40% in the last ten years and now stands at 194 deaths per 100,000 births. In January 2013, this hospital had forty-five births, thirty caesareans and fifteen vaginal births with no deaths. Having a caesarian is not just a matter of preference, the most common reasons are medical issues with the mothers including hypertension, pre-eclampsia and severe reduction in the amniotic fluid. Although I was shocked by the rust and old equipment they currently use, everything was sterilized and clean. I realize that these mothers are the privileged and the lucky ones. I discover you only need basic medical supplies to improve maternal and infant mortality.
Laky is visibly relieved as she meets her healthy baby boy for the first time. Laky has already lost a daughter (3 yrs old) after a severe bought of diarrhea, a common occurrence in Bangladeshi children under 5. 67
The Sylhet Red Crescent Maternity Hospital has a Child Welfare Clinic to support the pregnant mothers throughout the pregnancy to ensure mother and child get the best care.
In India, ultrasounds were banned to try and curb sex determination test. At the Child Welfare Clinic they try not to tell the mother the sex of the baby during the ultrasound. The machine is used to check the growth of the baby and to check the amniotic fluid has not been reduced a sign of life threatening pre-eclampsia. 69
Laky Bagum getting prepped up for the caesarean birth. 72
A Cesarean section is a major operation, cutting through 5 layers of skin, fat and tissue. At Sylhet Red Crescent Maternity Hospital only emergency caesareans are carried out, but in Australia it seems to be becoming a modern way of having a baby. 75
Dr SanjidaJebin Choudhury washes her hands before the emergency caesaran. 77
Still Human Alex Swinton/ARGUS
BANGLADESH IS A DEMANDING SOCIETY to live in. With a population of 200 million, resources are scarce and access to them is achieved through competition, hard work and privilege. Adding to the constant struggle for survival many are disadvantaged by birth, gender and misfortune. Leprosy is one of these misfortunes. This bac80
teria, once the scourge of the pre-industrial world, exists today in the parts of the world which are ill-equipped and ill-financed to fight the ravages of the disease. For the afflicted there is little hope and low quality of life. The Sylhet Leprosy hospital, established in 1890, is the
largest leprosy hospital in Bangladesh. It provides free government funded care for up to 48 patients. Statistically, the prevalence of leprosy in Bangladesh is 2.2 in 100,000. Yet despite 95% of people having a natural immunity to the disease, many of the patients are ostracised by their families and are unable to work because of poor educa-
tion about the illness. For a period of four days I visit the hospital and am struck by the feeling isolation, loneliness, and hopelessness surrounding the patients. Leprosy, stigma and poverty have combined to rob these people of a future.
How do you see Profile Matthew Littlewood Website: howdoyousee.com Text: Leesa Connelly and Elin Fjelldal Photos: Matthew Littlewood
Etosha National Park – Namibia In the evening light, zebra herds cautiously drink around a watering hole, always on lookout for predators.
PHOTOGRAPHY IS A PASSION for Matthew Littlewood, and he for one plans for it to stay that way. Littlewood first began learning about photography in highschool, shooting rolls of film on a Pentax and he spent a lot of time in the darkroom honing his craft. From then on, Matthew has travelled the globe creating personal projects and shooting wildlife and travel-style shots. At present he lives on the Gold Coast, studying graphic design in between trips overseas to see new places and photograph them.
“Everywhere but Antarctica”. While he knows this may be a bit of an exaggeration, his travel list is extensive including South Western Africa, Eastern Africa, South and Central America, Europe and parts of Asia. At the moment he is working towards his next trip, where he plans to travel to Northern America, buy a car or a bike and “go south from there”. This vague itinerary is indicative of the way Littlewood likes to travel. He doesn’t plan where he will end up; he goes to a place and wanders about. Whatever happens, happens.
Still only twenty-four years old, Littlewood has packed a lot of adventures into a relatively short space of time. When asked where he had been in the world, he replied
For Matthew, travel and travel photography is more than just an interesting past time or a way to getting pretty pictures. Quite the contrary, when it comes to choosing
a destination, a desire to experience the place always comes first. That said, he is often inspired by the travel photographs of others to want to go and experience a place – something that he hopes his own images will have the power to do. To this end, Littlewood has created a concept for sharing visual stories called ‘How do you see?’ a website aiming to educate people about the world through photographs, to reveal the world in different and unexpected ways and make the viewer want go out and take part in it rather than just sitting around. Apart from inspiring other people to travel, the website is also a platform for others to share their visual stories. Littlewood believes that we could all benefit from broadening our minds and having our eyes opened to different people and ways of life. He feels that this website is a way to educate people through the stories that are shared there which will hopefully inspire people to then embark on experiences of their own. For his own ventures Littlewood isn’t fussy about whether he travels with companions or alone. While he says he likes travelling with others he wouldn’t let a lack of a travel buddy put him off a trip. Being alone also has its perks, his friends might not want to wait for the right light, “they might not see what I see” he says. Besides this, in an effort to meet the most interesting people, Matthew has a travel policy of staying in hostels when he travels. A policy that would no doubt mean that there would never be a shortage of new friends to be made along the way. Whether talking about the places or the photographs, it is clear that experience and self realization lies at the core of Matthews motivation to go on these adventures. He has often risked life and limb in the process of taking a photograph. Whether it be scaling cliffs, or getting up close and personal with dangerous wildlife, Littlewood isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty. He speaks about one such situation in Botswana. A tour guide had driven up too close to an Elephant, cornering the creature. Feeling threatened, the Elephant charged.
“I’ve been pretty much everywhere but Antarctica.” Endangered animals, and places, are another reason why Littlewood feels strongly about travel photography. His images might educate others to preserve and appreciate the world. At the very least, he is able to document what was there, which might be all that there is left for future generations. Although he’s updated his equipment from the first film Pentax to a Canon 7D, his love for the artform of photography still remains from those days in the highschool darkroom, and it’s for this reason that Littlewood has kept photography a passion rather then a source of income. He feels that his photography would lose its truth if it was motivated by money rather than experiencing a place and capturing that experience. That said, he admits if he were offered an assignment to go off and shoot and amazing place he would jump at the chance. Littlewood comes from the school of thought that you shouldn’t fiddle around with your images in post. The experience of photography is about capturing a moment.
Antelope Park – Zimbabwe The lion is the King of Africa. A truly majestic and incredibly fierce creature, whose numbers are diminishing in the wild.
At the end of the day, Matthew Littlewood doesn’t see himself as privileged. He sees himself as a hard worker who is only doing something that everyone else could (and perhaps should) be doing. When he’s not travelling the world, he’s home in Coomera working and studying full time. Keeping so busy has the added benefit of not allowing him time to spend the money he earns; it all goes into equipment and financing his trips. This is the bottom line of Littlewoods creed. You don’t have to be rich and privileged to see the world, you work hard and this kind of thing is accessible for anyone. Matthew has worked in hospitality, marketing, photography and graphic design in order to fund his travels. In some ways Littlewood’s dreams are the same as many Australian backpackers. 92
To see the snow, the northern lights and places that are different from our own home. In other ways, Littlewood’s motivation is as far from the normal backpacking student as you can imagine. He’s not interested in souvenirs or likes on instagram. What Matthew is after is the rush of adrenaline from risking all to get a photo. He’s after selfrealization, an experience that will broaden his mind and perhaps help him inspire others to do the same. In his equipment bag: Mac Book, 7D, 50D backup, telephoto lens, several wide angle lenses and portrait lenses, flashes, a couple of tripods, optic filters.
The Impenetrable Forest – Uganda The gorillas of central Africa are incredibly endangered and all efforts are being made to preserve this regal creature of the mist.
“You don’t have to be rich and privileged to and see the world.”
Maasai Mara â€“ Kenya The Maasai tribes of southern Kenya still live and breathe their ancestorâ€™s way of life.
Kande Beach â€“ Malawi A young local boy peers through a bamboo fence as the sun sets
Sossusvlei â€“ Namibia Dune 45 is the most famous living moving sand dune in the Namib Desert standing around 170 metres.
Kigali â€“ Rwanda A curious child spots the only foreigner at service on Christmas morning in the Rwandan Capital.
The Amber Fort – Jaipur.
Life on hold Nathalie Reinholdtsen/ARGUS nathalierein.com
TROY IS IN PAIN. His eyes are swelling up, to the point that he is unrecognizable. Despite multiple trips to specialists his symptoms are becoming more acute. Three bone marrow samples are taken. What follows is an agonizing four weeks waiting for the results of the tests. Unfortunately the news is far from good, and Troy is diagnosed with cancer. Troy is fifteen months old. This is a story about a young family whose life was turned upside-down.
At the end of the road Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS
KIBERG IS THE NAME OF a small fishing village in the far north of Norway. Facing the Barents Sea, it is the only point on the mainland with an arctic climate. Once a booming fishing port, the town is haunted by the spectre of World War Two when it was occupied by Germans. Rendered a virtual ghost town, itâ€™s decaying shacks and 104
empty streets are home to a dwindling population of approximately two-hundred people. My family comes from this place, and although I never lived here, the locals remember my name from the days when my great-grandfather brought electricity to Kiberg.
The locals have told me that there was a saying about him, “where Hans Fjelldal placed hammer to a nail was where that nail was meant to sit”. I grew up in the south, listening to stories about Kiberg’s past and present. Some stories were about my family and fishing adventures, though the ones I heard most, and that resonated strongest, were the stories about the war and the marks it left on the land and the people. A few years ago, I noticed an ad in the local paper. “House in Kiberg will be traded for car, boat, snowmobile or anything else that’s fun”. Today, almost no one in Norway has heard of Kiberg. Along with the decreasing population the culture and national heritage sites have been vanishing
before my eyes. The advertisement suddenly made me realise the importance of documenting the remains of this place and its historic landmarks, before the trace and memory of them was lost. I believe that as a documentist, I have a responsibility to document Kiberg. If the day comes when no one remembers the past of Kiberg I hope my photographs will provide an insight into the history. Many may not see the value of a portrait of a culture until that culture is lost. I aim to prevent this place from being forgotten.
The old fish processing factory on the harbour of VardĂ¸ has seen one too many winters. VardĂ¸, 2012. 107
The machinery room on the warf is abandoned, however, all its interior is left in place. The decay witnesses that time has stood still ever since the clock stopped. VardĂ¸, 2012. 108
Komafest, a street art festival held in July 2012, invited European street artists to give VardĂ¸ a face lift. 109
The Germans created roads across the mountains to be able to drive to the cannon posts along the coast. Among Europe’s biggest batteries were located at ‘Festung Kiberg’, and aimed at the Soviet Union’s ships. This vessel was left behind at the end of the war, and serves as a reminder of the days of war. 110
The Marinefährprahm “F-111” was stranded in Molvika in 1942 after an attempt to load a small Australian aircraft onto it during a storm. The sea washed the 50 meter longship onto land where it has been rusting ever since. 111
“House in Kiberg will be traded for car, boat, snowmobile or anything else that’s fun”. Add from the local newspaper Finnmarken
Grandfather Hans Fjelldalâ€™s kitchen window is decorated with pink plastic flowers. The same flowers are in the windows of other houses along the harbour street. Fresh flowers are not sold in this region and the artic climate limits the growth of wild plants. 115
‘Hurtigruta’ cruise line stops in Vardø before sailing back south. The captain honks as the cruise passes through the levy, and all the seagulls shoot into the air.
A string of paper cranes decorates Gai Li Linâ€™s room at the May Wah Hotel. 118
VANCOUVER’S ‘OLD’ CHINATOWN: STILL HERE Jackie Wong/Tyee Solutions Society special to the ARGUS
IT’S A WEDNESDAY MORNING in March, and Chinatown’s May Wah Hotel is a hive of activity. Up a narrow flight of stairs from the hotel’s easy-to-miss street door, Vancouver Second Mile Society outreach worker Cindy Pang is surrounded by a circle of anxious seniors. They press pill bottles into her hands, their English labels and instructions unreadable. She translates into Cantonese, answering what questions she can. Everybody, it seems, knows her, likes her, and is keen for individual attention. They treat her fondly, like a family member. Outside on East Pender Street, people duck out of the rain under storefront awnings crowded with boxes of gai lan and bok choy. Few spare a moment for the sturdy old four-storey brick building above them, much less the simple gold-painted block letters that identify it as the May Wah Hotel. Entering feels like going back in time. Strains of Chinese opera can be heard behind doors thickly layered in deep red paint. The walls in the spare, neat first floor lounge display compulsory “No Smoking” signs, but there are ashtrays on the tables and people exhale carefully out over Pender Street through an open window. In a shiny rainbow necklace over a black and white zebra-print shirt, Rosesari Rosesari stands out from her neighbours. Ninety-two, Rosesari pays $320 a month for her room here. She makes a point of telling me she receives no government assistance to pay for housing. Ethnically Chinese, Rosesari doesn’t recall exactly when she moved to the May Wah, or even the precise year she came to Canada from Bali, Indonesia. One son lives in Richmond, she tells me; her other children half a world
away in Indonesia. She is quick to express pride in the home she has created here for herself. Every space in the
“I look old, but my heart is still young.” tiny but bright room has its use. The ceiling has hooks to hang her coats. A daikon radish and green beans sit on a tall plastic bucket by the sink, near a rice cooker and a toaster oven. The room is decorated with butterfly trinkets, youthful knick-knacks, as well as colourful origami. “I’m happy and I’m healthy,” Pang translates Rosesari’s Cantonese for me. “I look old, but my heart is still young.” While much is said about the seemingly flamboyant wealth of some Chinese immigrants to Canada, those who live at the May Wah and other privately owned SROs in the old Chinatown area share a very different experience. For them, this country has delivered poverty, discrimination, and a marginalization that leaves them in the shadow of a media spotlight often trained on the Downtown Eastside neighbourhood’s troubled English-speakers, many of whom struggle with addictions, mental illness and abusive histories in residential school or foster care. Like other SROs, the approximately 40-room May Wah is home to a mix of long-time residents and people in transition. Some regard it as a temporary stay while their names inch forward on a waiting list for social housing. 119
Rosesari Rosesari’s room overlooks Pender Street. The convenience of Chinese-speaking merchants helps make her feel at home here.
But for the seniors who speak only Chinese, living in Chinatown is a crucial connection to the only community where they feel fully at home. Many speak no language other than Chinese, and have lived at the hotel for years. The May Wah is one of 10 buildings Pang visits weekly, helping hundreds of Chinese seniors like Rosesari connect with public and social agencies that provide housing, health, and social support. Her work has a lot to do with Rosesari’s youthful satisfaction with life. Unfortunately Pang is paid to work only 28 hours a week. A colleague works fewer hours still. A separate organization, the 120
Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre, employs another person for 30 hours a week of bilingual Chinese seniors outreach. Together, the three overtaxed staff are the only service providers dedicated to alleviating the isolation of the city’s thousands of solitary Chinese seniors. A hidden, growing crisis Rosesari pays $320 a month for her room, and has to share kitchen and bathroom facilities with her neighbours. Other residents on the same floor pay $200 to $290 for similar rooms. Ninety-three-year-old Gai Li Lin has been living down the hall for eight years. For more than 20
The affordable rooms at the May Wah mean that everyone shares a communal bathroom down the hall.
years, while in Canada, Lin says that her life’s work has consisted of taking care of children. Her adult children live in the Lower Mainland. Confucian tradition obliges adult children to take care of their aging parents. But “most have the same story,” Pangs says of the seniors she works with. “Kids get them here, they take care of the grandkids. And when they get old, they stay here,” she adds, matter-of-factly. Modest as those are, Lin and Rosesari can feel relatively fortunate among Chinese seniors. They live in a building that is well maintained, not currently under threat of
eviction and, unlike other area SROs, affordable to people with low incomes. Though Vancouver’s Chinatown has been home to generations of immigrants since 1858, reliable information about how many elderly live alone there today is remarkably hard to come by. Statistics Canada offers - for a fee - to tabulate the number of inner-city Chinese seniors who responded to the most recent census survey in 2011. But with less than one per cent of such seniors believed to speak any English, and many unable to read or write in their mother tongue, let alone 121
“I’m happy and I’m healthy,” Rosesari Rosesari says. She is 92 years old and lives in the May Wah Hotel in Vancouver’s Chinatown.
Gai Li Lin is 93. She’s lived in the May Wah for eight years after a life spent caring for children, first her own, later her grandkids.
English, knowledgeable observers believe it would yield an unreliable count. What we do know is that 30 percent of the City of Vancouver’s population and closer to half - 41 percent - of people who reside in Chinatown’s ten-block area, identify themselves as Chinese. And as recently as 2011, UBC’s Centre for Urban Economics and Real Estate contended that the shortfall of social housing is greatest among Chinese seniors of all elderly ethnic immigrant groups in Vancouver. 124
The UBC Centre estimated that over 3,300 Chinesespeaking seniors lack the wealth to be homeowners and would benefit from affordable, culturally and linguistically specific assisted living facilities. The next largest language community of ethnic seniors who could benefit from such support is 560 Tagalog-speaking seniors, followed by 340 Punjabi speakers. It is also true that social housing is in short supply for all Vancouver’s seniors. Metro Vancouver can provide housing for one of every seven seniors living in the region.
The City of Vancouver has 11,000 social units available for its 81,930 seniors. Unsurprisingly, waiting lists are long: the 4,549 names on the list of people hoping for seniors’ social housing in Metro Vancouver has gone up by nearly 45 percent in just the last four years, according to a March report by the United Way Lower Mainland and the Social Planning & Research Council of BC (SPARC BC), and the need is growing. Metro Vancouver’s senior population is predicted to more than double by 2031. “Although most seniors do not live in social housing, with other factors remaining equal, the greater the number of seniors, the more seniors’ social housing is needed,” the SPARC report notes.
didn’t go to school until she was in her teenage years. She went to primary-school-level classes for a few years, night school. She had to work during the day and she paid tuition to go there herself. My dad was in the same boat.” The Seniors Centre’s clients are mostly women, who tend to live longer than men. Now in their 80s or more, they are even less likely to have literacy skills than their male counterparts. Their generation emerged from a cultural tradition that barred women from education, observes Alice Choi, a registered nurse and executive
“There is a saying in Chinese that it’s a virtue when the females don’t know anything.”
Shelter isn’t enough If more shelter is needed for Chinese seniors, so is more personal support. Three blocks from the May Wah Hotel, the Downtown Eastside Seniors Centre operated by the Vancouver Second Mile Society at Hastings and Jackson is a boisterous place at midday. People are eating lunch, reading the newspaper, playing table tennis and Mah Jong. Two thirds of the 500 members are Chinese. When executive director Steve Chan asks them to register, many sign their names with the letter ‘X.’ They are unable to write or read. “If they’re from a village in China, they may not even have elementary school,” says Chan, who’s worked here for 13 years and is the centres first Cantonese-capable director. “We don’t have many statistics on literacy levels for the seniors we reach out to,” he acknowledges. “But just take my mom, for example. She’s 78. [As a child she] went through the Second World War. At that time in China, in Hong Kong, they had to run, to flee from the Japanese. They didn’t have a chance to go to school. My mom
director of health services for the United Chinese Community Enrichment Services Society, better known as S.U.C.C.E.S.S. “There is a saying in Chinese that it’s a virtue when the females don’t know anything,” Choi says. “If you’re not smart and you don’t know anything, it’s the role of the wife, of the female, to reproduce and to take care of the household stuff. All the business, all the education, goes to the sons.” Many of Second Mile outreach worker Pang’s clients arrived in Canada later in life, coming to help adult children take care of grandchildren in the Lower Mainland. They “relied on their husbands and their children, and they can’t even read a very simple letter,” Pang says. “Now, they’re on their own.” Virtually none of Vancouver’s inner city Chinese seniors (a barely-there 0.1 per cent) speak English well, according to a 2007 survey (available in hard copy only), of Chinese seniors and services in the old Chinatown and surrounding areas. Hardly more (0.3 per cent) speak even limited English. Eighty-eight percent spoke Cantonese; 12 percent Mandarin. The 2007 survey - conducted by Dr. Sing Mei Chan of the UBC School of Social Work, for the City of 125
Many of the May Wah’s residents have lived there for years. Others are waiting to move up the waiting list for social housing.
Vancouver, found that language barriers, discrimination, racism, and a lack of information, education, and advocacy all create pressing service gaps for Chinese seniors. The findings echoed earlier research indicating that fewer than a quarter of Asian American seniors in another historic magnet for immigrants - New York City - spoke English. Poverty, loneliness and anxiety were their three most pressing issues. For the lucky few in Vancouver, the bilingual outreach workers who visit the SROs are rare conduits to social agency support. But the task is overwhelming. Pang, one co-worker at the Second Mile Society, and Deanna Wong of the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre, are shouldering it alone. Translating forms and talking seniors individually through English-language housing applications, tax returns and 126
other requirements, is emotionally and physically taxing. It’s a high turnover job, and more than one former outreach worker with the Second Mile Society is on longterm disability as a result of the stress. ‘Revitalizing,’ but leaving seniors behind Last July, Vancouver city council unanimously approved a three-year Chinatown Neighbourhood Plan and Economic Revitalization Strategy. More than a decade in the making, the plan focused on economic revitalization, after twothirds of businesses surveyed in Vancouver’s original Chinatown reported declining revenues between 2008 and 2011 - blamed mainly on losses to newer Chinese-language communities in suburbs like Richmond. The revitalization plan envisions new residential development, “to connect with younger generations and reach out to people of all backgrounds to ensure
Chinatown is increasingly relevant to a more multi-cultural Vancouver.” At the same time, it acknowledged that in a neighborhood where 67 percent of households are lowincome - more than twice the City of Vancouver average - such redevelopment “can displace low-income residents.” What is good for old Chinatown’s businesses, in short, may be less so for its poor and isolated elderly. S.U.C.C.E.S.S., Vancouver’s primary provider of culturally and linguistically supportive housing and services for Chinese seniors, is providing a partial answer. It operates a single multi-level care facility in old Chinatown for people with cognitive impairments or who require round-theclock nursing. But its 103 beds, soon to be 113, are about one-tenth of what the UBC Centre for Urban Economics anticipates will be needed over the next 15 years to house Chinese seniors.
Meanwhile, the support it offers seem a world away from Rosesari and her neighbours living in privately operated SROs like the May Wah Hotel. Yet the women are spirited and resilient. “I’m happy and I’m healthy,” Rosesari told me through Pang’s interpretation. Both she and Lin say they like living in Chinatown. They feel at home here, where the language spoken is the one they know. They are also in their 90s. As time goes on, they and others may no longer be able to manage the May Wah’s staircases, its lack of mobility aids, and its communal bathing facilities. The alternatives available to them then are in terribly short supply.
singles The best of 2013
A woman stands in contemplation at Newmarket, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Photo: Alex Swinton/ARGUS 129
Lower middle class Chinese passengers wait in Qingdao station hall for their train to depart during the Chinese Spring Festival, 2013. Photo: Jiawei Gao/ARGUS 130
An empty platform at Qingdao train station, China. Due to overcrowding, passengers arenâ€™t able to wait on the platforms for their departing trains. This results in overcrowded waiting rooms. Photo: Jiawei Gao/ ARGUS 131
A press photographer and a transsexual at the 25th Sydney Mardi Gras GLBTIQ Parade, 2013. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 132
‘Young Lovers’ at a folk music concert at the Island Vibe Festival, North Stradbroke Island 2012. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 133
A man sits outside Bet Giyorgis church in Lalibela, Ethiopia. 134
Photo: Vibeke Johannessen/ARGUS.
A churchgoer participates in a weekly Pentecostal service. This image is from a body of work exploring the â€˜hysteriaâ€™ of religion. Photo: Alex Swinton/ARGUS 135
My Grandparents Fay & Jack have experienced 57 years of adventuring together. Here they lay on the bed in their old Queenslander home, in which they have lived for 21 years. Photo: Sharna Hupfield/ARGUS 136
A surfer rides an afternoon wave at Burleigh Heads with Surfers paradise skyline in the background. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 137
Julian Wilson gives it all in the third round Quicksilver Pro ASP World Tour. Snapper Rocks, March 2013. Photo: Elin FjelldalARGUS 138
Kelly Slater cuts deep into the wave, winning his heat in the third round and proceeds into the fourth round of the Quicksilver Pro ASP World Tour. Snapper Rocks, March 2013. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 139
The crowd storms towards the beach to celebrate and get a photo of the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast champion surfer Kelly Slater, who had a controversial win. With wave priority Slater dropped in on Joel â€˜Parkoâ€™ Parkinson who was already in the last wave on the clock, surfing towards victory. An upset Parko makes his way through the crowd, unnoticed. Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast 2013. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 141
John Evans was born on 25 September 1921. He served in New Guinea during WW2 (most of his active service was in Milne Bay). He served with an anti-aircraft during the Battle for Milne Bay, which was the first time the Japanese land forces were defeated in WW2. John also served overseas in the Vietnam War as a member of the Legal Corps, he was the primary legal officer for Australian and New Zealand forces in Vietnam from 1965 to early 1966. Photographed on the 25th April, 2013 at the Southport 9am service. Photo: Lauren Kessler/ARGUS 142
A small squad of Storm Troopers pose in a uniform attack formation for fans at this years Supanova Pop Culture Expo on the Gold Coast, April 20, 2013. These are but a few of the colourful characters that roamed around the floor posing for and with fans. Supanova has grown in popularity over the last couple of years it has been visiting the Gold Coast, bringing such characters out of the woodwork to entertain the masses. Photo: Chris Cook/ARGUS 143
The children are challenging the turning tide when cooling off while watching the ASP professional surfers fighting it out for the title of Quiksilver Pro. Snapper Rocks, Gold Coast, March 2013. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 144
8am on Saturday the 4th May. Linton Nitschke in the adultsâ€™ competition slams the breaks on after crossing the finish line at the Gaterbelts and Gasoline Soapbox Derby on Tamborine Mountain at the bottom of the Curtis Road. Photo: Monique Montfroy/ARGUS 145
Aurora DQ poses as part of the NOH8 campaign against homophobia. Aurora performs in drag at Draculaâ€™s a themerestaurant on the Gold Coast, Australia. Photo: Chris Chatham/ARGUS 146
Still life titled ‘Meat Head’, head of meat with figs and fava beans.
Photo: Liam Milkins/ARGUS 147
The Three Wise Monkeys is a reinterpretation of the pictorial maxim, ‘See no evil, Hear no evil, Speak no evil’. Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS 148
This is a conceptual photograph that depicts the aftermath of sexual abuse/domestic violence. Photo: Christie Landrie/ ARGUS 149
A character portrait of photo media artist Gunhild Martinsen Ohna. 150
Photo: Elin Fjelldal/ARGUS.
A double exposure, titled Inner Nature.
Photo: Aiden Ryan/ARGUS 151
Sunset by the water hole in Maasai Mara National Park, Kenya, 2012. 152
Photo: Matthew Littlewood/ARGUS
Photo: Matthew Littlewood/ARGUS 153
A sunset at Bendigo, Victoria.
Photo: Monique Montfroy/ARGUS 155
A fish dreams about freedom, to be rid of confinement and to live in a world where he is no longer contained by glass walls. Photo: Rachel Vercoe/ARGUS 156
Tallebudgera Creek, a place where Paige, and many others come to swim and enjoy the sun - until the sharks come out to do the same. Photo: Sharna Hupfeld/ARGUS. 157
Libby Best I Am I see Red Benjis Birth Story
Matthew Littlewood How Do You See
Elle Irvine Immesureble
Nikki Lingwood It is what it is
Grant Scott In that moment
Louis Lim Beneath the neon lights
Natalie Mariell Elholm A whole lot of love
Nathalie Reinholdtsen Life on hold
David Vaney Poleâ€™a apart
THE NEW WAVE OF AUSTRALIAN PHOTOJOURNALISM