EAST MEETS WEST | Photography taken by Children in Rwanda and Ghana
EAST MEETS WEST, an installation of photographs taken by children in Rwanda and Ghana opens at the NCC East Campus Gallery on Monday, November 12, 2012, and runs until Friday, January 18, 2013.
Six years ago, photojournalist Linda Smith came to Rwanda on a photographic assignment for a non-profit organization. She was only there two weeks but it was during that time that her life changed. She discovered the beauty of children and the power of teaching photography to children in need of money, school supplies and food. After her initial trip to Rwanda, Linda returned to conduct a photography workshop with eleven orphan children. She gave them all films cameras and a hundred rolls of film. They were free to photograph anything they liked. When, Linda returned to the US, she asked her friend Prossy Yohanna to continue to meet with them once a week to give them a new roll of film as well as having it developed for them. Prossy informed Linda that the children were using the cameras to photograph local weddings and shoot passport photos, and were earning some money from this. Once Linda heard that the children were using the cameras in such a practical way, she knew that she would be coming back to Rwanda often, to work with and encourage the students.
All of these efforts have culminated into turning the photography project into a small charitable organization called “Through the Eyes of Hope Project.” Over the past five years, the photography classes have expanded to schools, hospitals and community centers throughout Rwanda as well as several photography exhibits in the US and Rwanda. Many students from the US have come to volunteer in Rwanda to learn about the children's photography and to assist Linda with conducting photographic classes. During these years, photographic classes have been conducted in a refugee camp in Northern Uganda, a junior high school in the Bronx, NY and in a school in the village of Ghana. The aim has been to bring the classrooms to the community. These photography classes are conducted in rural areas, often without electricity or proper equipment. In fact, they often take place outdoors, under a tree.
The NCC Art Gallery hours are Monday–Friday 7:00 am–10:00 pm, Saturday 8:00 am–5:00 pm, closed on Sunday. For further information contact Susan Hardesty, Director of the NCC Art Gallery, at email@example.com or 857-7197.