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Peace in quiet

CATHERINE RHEA ROY
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Review Niko Guido’s heart full of humanity makes him the beholder who sees only beauty and beautiful things

Anti-war photographyMakes a case for world peace
Anti-war photographyMakes a case for world peace

It was difficult to make eye contact with the girl who stared at me from the portrait on the wall. Her skin had melted off her face leaving behind scars that she would carry for a lifetime.

The exhibition titled Leave Us Alone was held at Sublime Art Gallery in association with the Turkish Embassy marks the tenth anniversary of the Iraq war and makes a case for world peace.

Leave Us Alone is a part of the anti-war photography project that humanitarian and photojournalist Niko Guido has put together.

The pictures show the brutality of war in a series of heart-rending photographs that bring to focus the plight of a society ravaged by war.

In the trail of misery and destruction that the war left behind, the portraits remind us of the thousands of lives that were left behind, scarred and wasted. Each portrait Guido says, “Our brains fed by visual media are not affected by powerful imagery as they used to be. It is getting harder every single day for the documentary photographer to draw attention to the problems of the world and humankind. It is for this very reason that we decided on an exhibition format in which we are bringing the voices and the photographs together.”

For this project, voices of each photographed Iraqi was recorded. The wounded civilians introduced themselves and reminisced about their lives before the bomb went off. They also revealed how that particular event altered their lives forever.

The voices of each of the victims who have been photographed speak to the world, they talk about their life before the bomb and how their lives will never be the same again.

In 2010 Guido went to Amman to take pictures of Iraqi civilians who had plastic surgeries, “On my last visit an Iraqi, who had more than 30 operations on his face, commented as follows: “We don’t want your civilization, money or modern living... Just leave us alone.”

CATHERINE RHEA ROY

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