Tom Stoddart: iWITNESS

  December –
January 2004

Image by Tom Stoddart from the exhibition iWITNESS at Gallery of Photography Ireland, December 3 – January 30 2004.

iWITNESS is an important exhibition by the world famous photojournalist, Tom Stoddart. With over 70 powerful black and white photographs, the exhibition bears witness to some of the most intense humanitarian disasters the world has seen over the last fifteen years.

iWITNESS includes uncompromising images depicting the tragic consequences of famine in southern Sudan; the siege of Sarajevo; the plight of Rwandan refugees; ‘ethnic cleansing’ in Kosovo; floods in Mozambique; and the devastating earthquake in north-western India of 2001.

It also includes work from New York after 9/11; reportage from the Iraq conflict where Stoddart was embedded with the Royal Marines; and images from his ongoing work documenting the AIDS catastrophe that is ravaging sub-Saharan Africa.

The images present a moving tribute to the dignity and courage of ordinary people who find themselves in terrible situations through no fault of their own. As Stoddart says: “The people portrayed in the photographs are heroes: innocent people trapped and battered by circumstances beyond their control.” He adds: “Most of the events chronicled here can be attributed directly to mankind’s greed, intolerance, prejudice, inhumanity, lust for political power, and sheer stupidity… Don’t feel sorry when you look at these pictures – feel angry that we need to be reminded of such folly. It is sad but necessary that these photographs exist.”

iWITNESS is brought to Ireland in association with Concern. Chief Executive Tom Arnold said: “Tom Stoddart’s powerful and compassionate images truly reflect the environment in which Concern works in some of the poorest countries on the planet.”

Tom Stoddart will give a public talk about his work in the Gallery of Photography at 12.30pm on Friday 3rd December. Admission is free/ donations to Concern welcome.

About the photographer:

Born in the north east of England, Tom Stoddart has worked extensively for major international newspapers and magazines. His work has received numerous awards and accolades. A founder of the Independent Photographers Group (IPG), Stoddart now concentrates on producing campaigning photographic projects on the serious world issues of our time. www.tomstoddart.com