The most recent publication from the award-winning photographer Pieter Hugo reveals the devastating consequences of toxic waste on one community in Africa.
In his previous well–received volumes of photographs, Hugo offers unflinching yet striking portraits of humans, animals, societies, and landscapes that shock and disturb, but also demand our attention. In Permanent Error, he documents a garbage dump in Ghana that has become the repository for discarded computers from around the world. These haunting images document the true cost of a misguided policy—the shipping of millions of tons of obsolete computers to developing countries. The computers are burned to extract valuable metals, effectively turning the site into a toxic wasteland that contaminates air, soil, and groundwater for miles around. These amazing portraits tell a story of a marginal community overwhelmed by poverty, but where human strength and resilience shine through the inhuman conditions Hugo lays bare.
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Pieter Hugo was born in 1976 and lives in Cape Town. He is the winner of the KLM Paul Huf Award 2008 and the Discovery Award 2008 at the Rencontres d'Arles festival. His previous books include Looking Aside (2006), Messina/Musina (2007) and The Hyena & Other Men, Nollywood, Permanent Error, This Must Be The Place (all from Prestel).