2014 - Film Diary
Kaidan | Masaki Kobayashi | Japan | 1964 | 8.5
Luo Changwei - Da Qin Island (2012)
"Da Qin Island was first set up by Chinese officials in 1924 as a colony to separate leprosy patients from the general population, but in 2011, the last 40 patients were transferred back to rehabilitation facilities in mainland China.
Before the move, Changwei traveled to the isolated island for several months to document the patients and their way of life.
The images reveal a marginalized group still coping with life on the outside. Da Qin Island was, and perhaps still is, a place frozen in time and hidden from most of the world, yet Changwei’s narrative also includes the beauty of the locale, albeit one whose wondrous beaches act more as a barrier than a place to bask in the sun.”
Detroit - Unbroken Down
In the past 40 years, the number of people living in the city of Detroit has halved. This has led many to write it off — in many ways, wrongly — as a decrepit ghost town. Unbroken Down is a photo project that counters the images of abandoned buildings with personal, vibrant shots of everyday life in Detroit.
Photographer Dave Jordano – fresh out of college after being born and raised in the Motor City – was part of the exodus when he headed for Chicago to start a commercial photography studio in the late ’70s. Jordano’s father worked for General Motors and joked that motor oil ran in the family’s veins. Three years ago, Jordano returned to Detroit and began photographing the neighborhoods, people, vistas and communities of his hometown. His resulting body of work is an endearing and sprawling document of a city close to his heart.
“This is the most emotional work I’ve made,” he says. “I don’t get tired and I just keep wanting to go back. I find more and more material every time I go.”
Unbroken Down is also an attempt to set the photographic record straight. Jordano believes that Detroit is more than a tale of decline and images of the associated urban decay. Yet, a lot of celebrated photography projects made in Detroit recently have focused on ruination as if the apocalypse passed through and kept going.