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28 October 2010


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I wish I could agree with you here, but I suspect that this project is earnest and not at all satirical. I don't see satire in the images, and while the text feels overwrought to me, I think it matches the images strangely well. Perhaps because the images feel overwrought too.

I'd like to be wrong. This is one of those situations where I really, really want to be wrong and don't want to think that this is the case. But I don't see the satire you see. Can you show me where? Especially if you're looking at the images and not the text, I see no satire. I see an earnest attempt to capture what this Italian man thinks she is like... (also, the Italian part explains why de Luigi says "she.")

Very curious to hear more of your thoughts here.

Thanks John. This - de Luigi's project – is fascinating. It is what it is. Beautiful, sometimes disturbing photos and text that seems to have been squeezed through a google-translation mangle so that unless de Luigi tells us, we'll never know what was intended. The photos certainly don't concentrate exlusively on "human misery and environmental degradaton" (#10–#15 are quite the opposite). The only thing that might confirm it as (misjudged) satire for me is "TIA" – that lazy, throwaway phrase beloved of expats that I find it hard to believe a documentry photographer would use (though to be fair, this isn't his language, and "TIA" is said so often by so many people that it might already have different connations to a non-English-speaker). That, and calling Burkina Faso, Burkina Fasco (though I would have gone straight for Fiasco myself). Like Glenna, however, I've got a shadow of a worry that it's for real. In which case, shall we all agree that Stefano should stick to the phography? At which he excels.

It looks like a thirteen year old edited the photos. That he seems to be in earnest is rather embarrassing, especially because photos 10-15 are somehow violence-related because...This Is Africa, I suppose?

I think I see the parody...it's in John's painting this otherwise serious project as a parody. Like Glenna, I think the project itself seems earnest and full of the limits we wish were only to be found in parodies.


Serious. Indeed, I think that it is. And that's the problem. It's both serious and deeply flawed. It represents so much that's wrong about reporting from and about Africa.

I would point out that the project's description amounts to a self-parody. All I had to do was to quote it and place it in the context of Wainaina's fabled piece.

of course its a parody how could it not be otherwise it would be another of the long line of cliche ridden photo stories. Its got everything thing - guns bullet holes shadowy black, corpses men vultures, religious fervour prostitution. Tell me I am not wrong... please

I have traveled Africa and to my mind this is NOT AFRICA but a few isolated and presumed posed photos. Yes there is the never ending wars, but the USA is always at war, what makes Africa Diferent? suppose my mail will not be approved so it is actually pointless.

as an "African" photographer... I can only either laugh or cry at this funny and brilliant "how to".. either way it will involve tears. brilliant though :=)

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