I Can Only Tell You What My Eyes See: Photographs from the Refugee Crisis

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It is incomprehensible that there are some sixty million refugees worldwide, two million from Syria alone. In I Can Only Tell You What My Eyes See, a photographic essay of Syrian refugees’ flight Giles Duley records that horrible story through his camera. This seven-month project was commissioned by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Here we are presented with a very large number of photographs that Duley organized in four parts: Lesvos to Berlin; Shelters (refugee camps in Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan); Portraits; and Families. The photographs are good but not exceptional—Duley preferred to concentrate on quantity, not quality. Most of the photos are black-and-white except for Part II, Shelters. This set is particularly weak; photos were taken from some distance away and show very little; not a person in site. The portrait section is good, showing twenty-five portraits from five refugee camps—no one is smiling. This book has serious organizational problems: captions are inconveniently given at the end of each part. Many of the photos have no number or even page number, impossible to refer to any or easily find them again.

All profits from sales of the book go to the UNHCR.

Reviewed By:

Author Giles Duley, Photographer • Robert Del Naja, Foreword • Filippo Grandi, Foreword
Star Count /5
Format Trade
Page Count 192 pages
Publisher Saqi Books
Publish Date 2017-Oct-09
ISBN 9780863561795
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue December 2017
Category Art, Architecture & Photography


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