17 × 20.2 in
CollectionLimited Edition Artists Books
The University of the Witwatersrand, Wits Art Museum (WAM), Jack Ginsberg Centre for Book Arts
Typhoon Haiyan (known locally as Yolanda) was one of the strongest tropical cyclones ever recorded, killing over six thousand people when it devastated the Philippines on 8 November 2013. This artist’s book of black and white reportage photographs by the Australian photojournalist Stephen Dupont records the aftermath of the typhoon in the form of a horizontal concertina (intended to be viewed as a series of four panels). Many of the images are panoramas that depict scenes of near total destruction that Dupont (in reflective text from his journals) likens to the apocalyptic aftermath of a nuclear explosion. He arrived in Guiuan, in Eastern Samar, the point of Haiyan’s first landfall, on 19 November and from 22-25 November moved on to Anibong in Tacloban City, Leyte Island, where three large tanker ships were swept inland, wiping out an entire neighbourhood. However amongst the scenes of human tragedy and devastation, from the opening image of a neatly handwritten wall chart proving an overview of the disaster in the emergency operations centre (in one of the few buildings left standing) to the final surreal image of a boy venturing out to sea beyond the debris in the foreground (using an upturned refrigerator as a canoe, and his thongs as paddles), there is a strong sense of survival, recovery and life getting back to normal.
Double sided horizontal concertina, 43 cm x 41 m, folded to 43 x 51.3 cm, in a clamshell box. Front and back boards covered in heavy matte black paper, with box covered in the same material. Printed digitally with an Epson 4900 inkjet printer on 100% duo cotton rag paper. Title handwritten by the artist with a brush, then printed with glossy black foil stamping on front board, box lid, and spine.