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Ugandan Photographer Sarah Waiswa Wins Prestigious Recontres d’Arles 2016 Discovery Award

Sarah Waiswa snags the Recontres d’Arles 2016 Discovery Award for her project that sheds light on the challenges those with albinism face.

Ugandan-born, Nairobi-based photographer Sarah Waiswa recently won the Recontres d’Arles 2016 Discovery Award for her photography project: “
Stranger in Familiar Land.”


The documentary and portrait photographer clinched the competitive and prestigious prize in Arles, France. Ethiopian photographer and contemporary artist Aida Muluneh presented Waiswa with the prize for her work.

“[Stranger in Familiar Land] groups together various portraits of an albino woman set against the backdrop of the Kibera slums, which are a metaphor for my turbulent vision of the outside world. This series illustrates the life of an albino who is forced to face challenges emanating from both the sun and society,” Waiswa says in her project statement.

Speaking on the photographer’s offering, Muluneh says in an official statement:

“Sarah’s approach to photography is one of the curious gaze that reflects the complexities of her surroundings and of a continent that is still captured by others through a lens which perpetuates clichés.”

Have a look at  Waiswa's "Stranger in a Familiar Land" below:

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

'Stranger in a Familiar Land' by Sarah Waiswa.

The summer photography festival started in 1970 by Arles photographer Lucien Clergue, and the Discovery Award is given to a photographer or an artists using photography whose work has recently been discovered or deserves to be.

Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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