There is no government I know that does not champion democracy and human rights in its rhetoric but also actively suppress both in its practice. It’s best to recognise that reality and work within it rather than fantasise on some ideal solution that has no relevance to everyday art practice. So we use the tactics of judo wrestlers, using the opponent’s weight and turning it to our advantage. We use fulcrums and gravity and capitalise on the inherent inertia of the establishment. We are nimble and fleeting. As Ali might have done, we flit like the butterfly and sting like the bee.
The dot matrix Olivetti printer was noisy. The XT computer came without a hard drive: two floppy disks uploaded the operating system. When the electricity went (as it often did), we had to reload it. Our bathroom doubled as our darkroom. A clunky metal cabinet housed our prints, slides, negatives and files. Anisur Rahman and Abu Naser Siddique were our printers; I was photographer, manager, copy editor and part-time janitor. Cheryle Yin-Lo, an Australian who had read about us in a magazine, joined as our librarian. We offered and she happily accepted a local salary. My partner Rahnuma Ahmed often got roped in when we were short-staffed, which was often.
A behind the scenes glimpse at a remarkable media phenomenon:
The dot matrix Olivetti printer was noisy. The XT computer came without a hard drive: two floppy disks uploaded the operating system. When the electricity went (as it often did), we had to reload it. Our bathroom doubled as our darkroom. A clunky metal cabinet housed our prints, slides, negatives and files. Md. Anisur Rahman and Abu Naser Siddique were our printers; I was photographer, manager, copy editor and part-time janitor. Cheryle Yin-Lo, an Australian who had read about us in a western magazine, joined as our librarian. We offered and she happily accepted a local salary.
To coincide with the exhibition Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera, this symposium explores violence as a subject in relation to representations in the broadest range of historical and geographical?contexts.
It includes international artists, photojournalists and theorists who from their distinctive perspectives will attempt to unveil notions of spectatorship and consumption of violent images in contemporary culture. Key questions will encompass the notion of the political, apolitical or depoliticised spectator of representations of violence; the consequences of these kinds of practice and the difference between photo reportage and art photography. Speakers include Shahidul Alam, Steve Edwards, Susan Meiselas, Simon Norfolk, John Roberts, Julian Stallabrass and Alberto Toscano. Lawyer Rupert Grey was a discussant. Supported by Oxford Art Journal, Oxford University Press, the Open University and the British?Council.
In 2004, the Bangladesh government created a new armed enforcement agency, called the Rapid Action Battalion, in response to a perceived law and order crisis.
From early days, the force became notorious for the number of people killed, allegedly during gun battles, because they had been caught in the ‘crossfire’.
To draw attention to these killings, photographer Shahidul Alam created a project callled ‘Crossfire’ which has shown amidst?controversy?in Bangladesh. The show later went to Queen’s Museum in New York and now comes to Australia. Presenter: Liam Cochrane Speakers: Shahidul Alam, award-winning photographer and human rights activist.
Exhibitions in Powerhouse Museum Brisbane: Bangladesh 1971 and?Crossfire Please Retweet #stopcrossfire
Photographer, journalist, and human rights activist Shahidul Alam examines the issue of the increasing number of extra-judicial killings
In 2004 the Bangladesh government created a new armed enforcement agency, The Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), in response to a perceived law and order crisis. From early days RAB became notorious for the number of people that have been killed, allegedly during gun battles, because they?ve been caught in the ?crossfire?.
Shahidul Alam?s Crossfire project was first shown in Bangladesh in 2010 to draw attention to these killings. The government responded by shutting down the show. Eventually, facing a court ruling in favor of Alam, the government backed down and the show was reopened for a day.
Following a successful showing at the Queens Museum of Art New York in April, 2012, this exhibition marks the first time it will be shown in Australia.
Opening night: 6.30pm Wed 07 Nov
Presented by Drik, UQ?s Centre of Communication and Social Change, School of Journalism and Communication, Griffith University?s Queensland College of Art (QCA) and Brisbane Powerhouse
Shame on the government!
Shame on the director general, RAB!
Shame on the inspector general of police!
Have the last four years of ruling totally erased all conscience, not even a tiny speck left? Don’t any of you have even an iota of decency? Any little shred of gumption? Of courage?
Does the whole state machinery have to be brought to bear on a 17-year old boy and his family — a family of day labourers, whose youngest son Limon had worked in a brick kiln to pay for his college education until RAB shot off his leg — to pursue your own vendetta? Continue reading “Cowardice unlimited!”
Everyone was happy this Eid, said the prime minister. Her administration had worked hard to ensure that there were no price hikes, no power cuts. That the roads were in good shape, that the law and order situation was under control.
Sheikh Hasina congratulated herself thus as she exchanged Eid greetings with ?”distinguished guests” and “people from all walks of life” at her official residence. Same press releases year after year, regardless of who’s in power. I remember them from my childhood, no change in wording. Continue reading “The government's Eid gifts for Limon”
Limon Hossain, a Jhalakathi college student maimed by Rab last year, his mother and brother were injured in an attack allegedly by a source of Rapid Action Battalion in Rajapur upazila of the district on Monday.
Local criminal Ibrahim Hawlader intercepted Limon on Chhaturia-Idurbhari road when he was returning to his rented house at Kaukhali upazila of Pirojpur around 5:30pm after celebrating Eid with his family members, reports our Barisal correspondent, quoting Limon?s elder brother Sumon Hossain.