Toronto Star Profiles Canadian Photography Collective PhotoSensitive, Project on HIV/AIDS in Rwanda
January 8, 2008
The Toronto Star on Sunday featured an article by Christopher Maughan, an intern with the journalism partnership Rwanda Initiative, about the Canadian photography collective PhotoSensitive and its efforts to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS in Rwanda. PhotoSensitive, which was formed in 1990 by former Star photographer Andrew Stawicki and former Star graphics editor Peter Robertson, features social documentary projects, such as exhibits on homelessness, child poverty and literacy.
Stawicki said that PhotoSensitive's work not only educates and informs but that it has the potential to make people angry. "If they're angry, maybe they'll do something," he said. Local photographer Shyaka Anastase, who participated in the program, said, "A lot of people died or left the country during the genocide, and for that reason we don't have any great photographers here in Rwanda." He said that because of the media's role during the genocide, many potential journalists have been reluctant to continue in the profession. This has left the country's few remaining reporters to write articles and take pictures, according to Anastase.
The PhotoSensitive project will be exhibited at the National University of Rwanda in Butare. Peter Bregg, photo editor at Hello! magazine in Canada and member of the collective, said, "Whenever we bring AIDS to the front in Canada, it helps remind people the problem is still there. And it's not insurmountable. A lot of our pictures will illustrate despair, but a lot will also illustrate hope" (Maughan, Toronto Star, 1/6).
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.