James Whitlow Delano
Festival Hub - Paddington Town Hall
Why should we tell the story of Jasmine Dorana, a 15-year old widow & mother to an infant, after masked assassins dragged her teenaged husband, “Toto” by the hair, outside onto a rotten-wood porch of their tin-roof hut raised on posts above a fetid swamp choked in plastic and raw sewage, then shot him four times in the head, dying in her arms as she cried, “Pa, not yet…Not yet, please…We have a baby”?
Why should people care about, Remy Fernandez, an 84 year old grandmother left to raise 7 grandchildren after their father was executed by masked gunmen sent to the slums to kill him in his own living room?
Metro Manila’s massive slums are a vast dumping ground for the multigenerational poor and they make up the vast majority of the victims - an estimated 13,000 extrajudicial killings victims (and counting)- in Philippines President Duterte’s War on Drugs, or “Tokhang”.
We tell these stories because we're human, because by not knowing their story and not exposing these worst of crimes, we would become complicit in the crimes - we'd be sanctioning these crimes with our silence.
James Whitlow Delano is a Japan-based documentary storyteller. His work has been published and exhibited throughout the world and led to four award-winning monograph photo books, including, “Empire: Impressions from China” and “Black Tsunami: Japan 2011”. Projects have been cited with the Alfred Eisenstadt Award (from Columbia University and Life Magazine), Leica’s Oskar Barnack, Picture of the Year International, NPPA Best of Photojournalism, PDN and others for work from China, Japan, Afghanistan and Burma (Myanmar), etc. In 2015, he founded EverydayClimateChange (ECC) Instagram feed, where photographers from 6 continents document global climate change on 7 continents.
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