The Lion of Panjshir

Stephen Dupont, Marshall Weber
Publication Date: 2017
Artwork type: Unique book
Medium: photo, collage, rubbing, ink
Dimensions: 11.5 in W x 9.0 in H x 0.5 in D
Binding Type: accordion
Edition Size: 1
Sara Parkel (bookbinder)
Scarborough, New South Wales Australia
A homage to Ahmad Shah Massoud, the Afghan political and military leader and popular hero, best know for his successful military campaigns against both the Soviets and the Taliban. He was assassinated by Al Qaeda agents in 2001 two days before the 9/11 attacks in NYC. Militants disguised as an Iranian news crew blew Massoud and themselves up using a bomb disguised as a video camera.

Over the almost two decades that Stephen Dupont spent photographing in Afghanistan, Dupont became both an admirer and friend of Massoud and had unlimited access to his life as attested to by the intimate portraits of Massoud that Dupont was able to photograph

Weber illuminates Dupont’s photographs with rubbings from memorials that illustrate worldwide indigenous struggles and colonial wars across the centuries.  The found and cut-up memorial texts form a praise poem in homage to Massoud and provide an enigmatic portrait of this important and charismatic historical figure.

Rubbings were made from various memorials including ones from, the Battle of Little Big Horn, Montana, USA, the Massacre at Wounded Knee, South Dakota, USA, the Peace Memorial, Minnesota, USA, and various war memorials in Melbourne, and Canberra, Australia

Dupont and Weber have been collaborating on exhibitions, educational projects, and artists books for over a decade, currently working on a series of six rubbing and photo books. The first book in this “Dark Illuminations” series “Prisoners of War”,is in the collection of the Boston Aethenaeum, the “The Lion of Panjshir” is the second in the series.

The book binding was designed and executed by Sara Parkel
Institutional Collectors
Bucknell University
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