Guarantees Written on the Ice, Left within the Solar


Kiana Hayeri has been dwelling and dealing in Afghanistan for over eight years. Her images focuses totally on girls and women dwelling in battle situations and in Islamic society. She is especially involved with capturing different pictures of individuals’s each day lives, documenting the affect of a long time of conflicts, whereas additionally drawing consideration to the tales, power and dignity of the person. Since August final yr, when Western troops withdrew and the Taliban returned to energy, the state of affairs for girls has worsened. After greater than a yr, it has lengthy grow to be obvious that quite a few guarantees have been damaged, human rights have been disregarded, and the situations for girls specifically are extra devastating than ever. This makes photos from the nation all of the extra necessary. Regardless of the harder circumstances, Hayeri needs to proceed working as a photographer in help of ladies’s rights.

Might you briefly describe your LOBA sequence?
My work focuses on Afghan girls; the identical girls who have been put on the heart of the battle efforts to liberate them shortly after the People invaded Afghanistan. As we speak, many of those girls really feel that they’ve been deserted and left behind. Whereas I’ve coated the entrance strains and dramatic occasions of battle, I’ve additionally tried to seize a special and different narrative for America’s longest battle. The consequence of a single narrative is that it not solely robs folks of their dignity, nevertheless it impedes our skill to have equal compassion. Afghanistan is a spot of extremes, the very best and the worst of humanity stay aspect by aspect. Worry and braveness, despair and hope, life and loss of life coexist.

You have been in Kabul final yr additionally, and needed to witness the return of the Taliban.
Sure, final summer time all of us watched in disbelief as 20 years of progress in freedom of expression, girls’s rights and schooling have been wiped away in 20 days, because the nation quickly fell into the palms of the Taliban. As we speak all these features have been changed with extra restrictions, concern and uncertainty. Afghanistan continues to be a rustic with open wounds that’s struggling to heal.

How did the title of the sequence come about?
The title was an expression that I picked up as soon as from an Afghan therapist, whereas engaged on a narrative in regards to the state of psychological well being amongst girls in Afghanistan.

Which pictures did you select on your LOBA sequence?
On this portfolio, you’ll discover tales of ladies who discovered that murdering their husbands was their solely approach out of home violence, and who now, although in jail, have discovered peace. Tales of ladies from a number of the most distant areas who stroll for hours, come rain or shine, to go to high school. Tales of moms mourning the lack of their teenage daughters who have been brutally killed as they left their faculty in western Kabul. The story of a lady, whose 4 sons took totally different paths in life as they joined opposing sides of the battle. She carries an open wound on her throat that docs imagine is attributable to grief.

How have you ever skilled the previous couple of years in Afghanistan?
That’s a really troublesome query to reply; as a result of I believe these of us who stay there had a special expertise yr after yr. Our day-to-day life in 2014 was totally different from 2016, totally different from 2019, 2021 and immediately.

How has your work modified? What’s not doable immediately?
Geographically talking, I believe it’s doable to journey in every single place, however individuals are simply hiding in concern and infrequently reluctant to talk. Additionally within the final month or so, the Islamic Emirate has gone the additional mile to make it very troublesome to work. They’re not courageous sufficient to chop our entry, however they be sure that they waste a lot of your vitality, time and sources that we hand over.

How do you get in contact with the folks you painting?
My native colleagues, and I actually, have constructed up a community over time I’ve lived there. We simply attain out, make telephone calls, discuss to folks to seek out whoever we’ve got to seek out. Typically you simply have to indicate up in a spot and hope for the very best. It’s really teamwork although. Among the folks I work with depart an impression on me, and people are those that I attempt to keep up a correspondence with essentially the most. Both via direct telephone or Whatsapp.

What accountability do you see for your self as a photojournalist?
With so many pictures created on a regular basis, I believe our function as photojournalists has modified. I bear in mind Stephan Mayes as soon as informed me (paraphrasing a bit of right here): the age of single pictures has come to an finish. It’s now a stream of pictures that builds narrative and tells tales. I believe, as photojournalists, we’ve got to be extra considerate and kind these streams of pictures, with a view to change the general public’s notion and alter minds.

What does the LOBA Award imply to you personally?
It really means so much to me to obtain it; particularly because the jury talked about that my dedication to Afghanistan was admirable and excellent. I hope the award and the exhibition deliver some consideration again and maintain Afghans, particularly Afghan girls, within the information a bit longer. I hope my images assist bridge the hole and humanize these individuals who have been stripped of all the pieces they’d.

Kiana Hayeri was born in 1988, in Tehran, Iran, the place she grew up, earlier than emigrating to Toronto, Canada, as a youngster. In 2021, she obtained the Robert Capa Gold Medal for her The place Jail Is a Form of Freedom sequence, documenting the lives of Afghan girls in Herat Jail. In 2020, she obtained the Tim Hetherington Visionary Award; and have become the sixth recipient of the James Foley Award for Battle Reporting. Hayeri is a Senior TED Fellow and works usually for The New York Occasions and Nationwide Geographic. She lives in Kabul, Afghanistan. Discover out extra about her images on her web site and Instagram channel.

All pictures of the LOBA sequence and additional data might be discovered on the LOBA webpage.
The LOBA catalogue 2022 additionally accommodates all pictures and an interview with the photographer.