Category Archives: Photo Essays by Orin Langelle

GJEP board chair unveils social and environmental justice photography at #SeeMeTakeover in Times Square

Photography amplifies the truth with stillness. In that single frame, that isolated millisecond, a truth is revealed, a visual message that can be understood regardless of language, culture or economic status.

G8 Riot Clown

G8 Riot Clown

For Orin Langelle, photographer and board chair of Global Justice Ecology Project, that message is to document a truth we face at GJEP every day – the struggle to create a world that prioritizes social and environmental justice. Since 1972 Langelle has given a voice to these conflicts in his powerful images, documenting peoples’ resistance to war, corporate globalization, ecological destruction and human rights abuses. From protestors and policemen at Vietnam War protests to going behind rebel lines with the Zapatistas in Mexico, Langelle has seen the world change through the lens of his camera.

Amador Hernandez Elders

Amador Hernandez Elders

“In my travels on this planet, I have seen a lot,” Langelle wrote on his website. “I have witnessed the beauty of this Earth and the efforts of many peoples striving for justice, and I have seen the ugliness of the abuse of people and the land—dictated by the greed of the power elite and those who serve them.”

Three of Langelle’s poignant shots will be prominently projected over the bustle of Times Square in New York City as part of the #SeeMeTakeover project on July 24, 2014, from 8-9 p.m. The project will showcase the work of artists and photographers from around the world on two of the largest video billboards at 46th St. and Broadway.

Upside-down Kuna

Upside-down Kuna

Langelle’s photographs capture more than a moment; they document the struggle of activists, indigenous peoples and organizations that fight to protect this planet and its inhabitants from the crushing axe of corporate greed. Langelle’s photography transports audiences into those moments, compelling them to look into the faces of truth and daring them to take action. Langelle is also a member of the steering committee of the international Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees and part of the Critical Information Collective. View more of his work at http://photolangelle.org.

About the photos in the SeeMe Takeover Times Square event:

 G8 Riot Clown (2007): This clown in front of riot police was one of 80,000 demonstrators in Rostock, Germany protesting a meeting of the G8–the world’s eight richest nations–in Heiligendamm, Germany near Rostock in early June 2007. Shortly after this scene, police used water cannons to spray the crowd with water mixed with tear gas.

Amador Hernandez Elders (2011): Journalist Jeff Conant and I took an investigative trip to Chiapas, Mexico, where we met the people of Amador Hernandez, an indigenous village based in the Lacandon jungle (Selva Lacandona). They invited us to document and learn of the plans of the government to relocate them from their homes. What we uncovered was another battle in the ongoing war between a simpler or good way of life (buen vivir) vs. the neoliberal development model.  Following our exposé, the government retreated from its plans and the community was not relocated.

Upside-down Kuna (2010): 2010 marked the 80th anniversary of the establishment of Kuna Yala, the autonomous territory of the Kuna people. The territory was officially recognized in response to political pressure and resistance by the Kuna, which began in 1925 in response to the violent suppression of Kuna cultural practices. In this photo, a Kuna youth walks upside down on Wichubwala island in Kuna Yala, off the east coast of Panama.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Uncategorized

You don’t need a Weatherman to know which way the wind blows

28 May 2014 by Orin Langelle, Source: PhotoLangelle.org

Note: Orin Langelle is the Director of Langelle Photography.  He is also the Chair of the Board of Directors of Global Justice Ecology Project and a member of the Critical Information Collective.  Langelle Photography is part of GJEP’s Social Justice Media Program.

When Bob Dylan wrote those words in 1965 for his song Subterranean Homesick Blues, he was not referring to the climate crisis, though these words are certainly appropriate today as we stare down the jaws of the oncoming climate catastrophe.  One does not need to be a meteorologist to know that if we do not begin taking real, effective and just action to address the climate crisis, we are all in deep s#*t.

I shot this portrait of Bill Ayers, former Weathermen and Weather Underground founder, prior to his event at local independent radical bookstore Burning Books, here in Buffalo on 21 May.  This is the first of a series of candid portraits I will be taking of radical movement figures in collaboration with Burning Books.  The point of this endeavor is to document some of the people that have participated in the making of history in the ongoing struggle for freedom and justice – a history of victories, losses, mistakes and successes, that we can and should learn from.

Bill Ayres 1 DSC_0031Portrait of Bill Ayers before he spoke at Burning Books on 21 May 2014 in Buffalo, NY.  Photo: Langelle

From Wikipedia (for what it’s worth):

William Charles “Bill” Ayers (born December 26, 1944) is an American elementary education theorist and a former leader in the counterculture movement that opposed U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. He is known for his 1960s radical activism as well as his current work in education reform, curriculum, and instruction. In 1969 he co-founded the Weather Underground, a self-described communist revolutionary group that conducted a campaign of bombing public buildings (including police stations, the U.S. Capitol Building, and the Pentagon) during the 1960s and 1970s in response to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.

“He is a retired professor in the College of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago, formerly holding the titles of Distinguished Professor of Education and Senior University Scholar. During the 2008 US presidential campaign, a controversy arose over his contacts with then-candidate Barack Obama. He is married to Bernardine Dohrn, who was also a leader in the Weather Underground.”

More on Ayers in Wikipedia and in The Buffalo News ’60s radical Ayers still wants a revolution

About the Portrait

I met Bill in 1969 before he went underground.  Before taking his photo, I told him that.   Bill said, “You looked the same then as you do now.”  I returned the humorous compliment.

I was glad to have this chance to take candid photos of Bill, and to talk to and know him better.

I think that a portrait done well is very personal and can bring out the real person – which is my goal.  I want the real image of the real person.  The image of someone who is deeply committed to what they do and provides us a glimpse of why they do it.

This is history and these stories and faces need to be remembered.

About the radical independent bookstore hosting his talk, Ayers commented, “Burning Books stands strong as an essential community space where we can gather, dream big, and act on what the known demands of us.”

How true that is.  And I’m glad to be working with them to collaborate on this portrait project.  Special thanks to Leslie James Pickering and all at Burning Books for making this possible. More information on how Leslie and Burning Books are standing up to the FBI can be found here. - Orin Langelle

And from the archives of the FBI:

10273462_782310935121312_1698067450828916578_n

 

1 Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Political Repression, Vietnam War

Memorial Photo Tribute for Pete Seeger’s 95th Birthday, May 3rd

by Orin Langelle, Langelle Photography

For Pete  

Born: 3 May 1919, New York City, NY 
Died: 27 January 2014, New York City, NY

pete seeger

 

Please have a look at these photos I took of Pete Seegerhttp://wp.me/p2Mr2B-TX last year during this performance in Buffalo, NY.  I believe this was the second to the last performance by Pete Seeger.

I thought it would be appropriate to release them in remembrance of what would have been his 95th birthday, this Saturday, 3 May 2014.

¡Pete Seeger Presente!

 

 

Leave a Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Events, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Vietnam War

Breaking: Pete Seeger, Songwriter and Champion of Folk Music, Dies at 94

Note: Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann of Global Justice Ecology Project had the privilege to see one of Pete Seeger’s last concerts in Buffalo, NY on November 9th.  Orin took photos of the event which he posted on his website.  You can view them here.  Pete Seeger was a powerful voice for change and part of the incredible uprising of the 1950s-1970s that helped end a war and stop some of the worst racist abuses in this country.  ¡Pete Seeger Presente!

–The GJEP Team

By JON PARELESJAN. 28, 2014, Source: New York Times

Pete Seeger performs in Buffalo, NY in November 2014.  PhotoLangelle.org

Pete Seeger performs in Buffalo, NY in November 2014. PhotoLangelle.org

Pete Seeger, the singer, folk-song collector and songwriter who spearheaded an American folk revival and spent a long career championing folk music as both a vital heritage and a catalyst for social change, died Monday. He was 94 and lived in Beacon, N.Y.

His death was confirmed by his grandson, Kitama Cahill Jackson, who said he died of natural causes at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

Mr. Seeger’s career carried him from singing at labor rallies to the Top 10 to college auditoriums to folk festivals, and from a conviction for contempt of Congress (after defying the House Un-American Activities Committee in the 1950s) to performing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at an inaugural concert for Barack Obama.

For Mr. Seeger, folk music and a sense of community were inseparable, and where he saw a community, he saw the possibility of political action.

In his hearty tenor, Mr. Seeger, a beanpole of a man who most often played 12-string guitar or five-string banjo, sang topical songs and children’s songs, humorous tunes and earnest anthems, always encouraging listeners to join in. His agenda paralleled the concerns of the American left: He sang for the labor movement in the 1940s and 1950s, for civil rights marches and anti-Vietnam War rallies in the 1960s, and for environmental and antiwar causes in the 1970s and beyond. “We Shall Overcome,” which Mr. Seeger adapted from old spirituals, became a civil rights anthem.

Mr. Seeger was a prime mover in the folk revival that transformed popular music in the 1950s. As a member of the Weavers, he sang hits including Lead Belly’s “Goodnight, Irene” — which reached No. 1 — and “If I Had a Hammer,” which he wrote with the group’s Lee Hays. Another of Mr. Seeger’s songs, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?,” became an antiwar standard. And in 1965, the Byrds had a No. 1 hit with a folk-rock version of “Turn! Turn! Turn!,” Mr. Seeger’s setting of a passage from the Book of Ecclesiastes.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under BREAKING NEWS, Climate Change, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Politics, Vietnam War

KPFK Earth Watch Interview: Orin Langelle on WTO Meetings in Bali

Orin Langelle, Founder and Board Chair of Global Justice Ecology Project discusses the WTO meetings in Bali taking place from 3-6 December, as well as several significant anniversaries for the global movement against neoliberal corporate globalization.  He also mentions the photo exhibit he has in Bali at the Peoples’ Camp taking place there parallel to the WTO meetings.  The exhibit can be viewed here: http://wp.me/p2Mr2B-JC

Candlelight memorial for Lee Kyung Hae at the WTO ministerial in Cancun in 2003 where Hae committed suicide in protest of WTO rules on agriculture.

Candlelight memorial for South Korean farmer Lee Kyung Hae at the WTO ministerial in Cancun in 2003 where Hae committed suicide in protest of WTO rules on agriculture.  PhotoLangelle.org

Leave a Comment

Filed under Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Earth Radio, Events, Industrial agriculture, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Political Repression, WTO

Globalization photographs at the Bali, Indonesia World Trade Organization (WTO) meetings

Fence is torn down during protests against the WTO ministerial in Cancún, Mexico in 2003 shortly after the suicide of South Korean farmer Lee Kyung Hae.  PhotoLangelle.org Fence is torn down during protests against the WTO ministerial in Cancún, Mexico in 2003 shortly after the suicide of South Korean farmer Lee Kyung Hae.  PhotoLangelle.org

Fence is torn down during protests against the WTO ministerial in Cancún, Mexico in 2003 shortly after the suicide of South Korean farmer Lee Kyung Hae. PhotoLangelle.org

Buffalo, NY (US) – Orin Langelle, a Buffalo-based photojournalist, in conjunction with the Asia Pacific Research Network [1], has a new photo exhibit documenting two decades of protests against globalizationhttp://wp.me/p2Mr2B-JC  that is being shown during the WTO ministerial in Bali, Indonesia.  The meeting started yesterday and ends on 6 December.

The exhibit is titled Peoples’ Struggle Against the WTO and Neoliberal Globalization.

The exhibit marks the 10th anniversary of the death of South Korean farmer Lee Kyung Hae, who took his life in 2003 while atop the barricades surrounding the WTO Ministerial in Cancún, Mexico. He wore a sign around his neck that said WTO Kills Farmers. His action was part of massive protests in Cancún against the trade policies of the WTO.  Moments before he died, Lee Kyung Hae said, “Don’t worry about me, just struggle your hardest.”  He was a member of La Via Campesina [2], the International Peasant’s Movement.

Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Commodification of Life, Corporate Globalization, Indigenous Peoples, Industrial agriculture, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, WTO

The Warsaw, Poland Exhibit at the UN Climate Conference

On 21 November 2013 various non-governmental organizations walked out of the Warsaw climate talks.  I am glad I have not attended for the last two years as I feel corporate interests have taken over the UN Climate Conference.

At this point I have no idea after the walk out if my photo exhibit was seized by UN security.  I hope the photo exhibit was up long enough for the the High Level Ministers to view and see the reality of neoliberalism and climate chaos. They may have glanced, but unfortunately those with power did not really see or care. – Orin Langelle

The photos in the exhibit were on display at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Warsaw, Poland at the IBON International booth.  The name of the exhibit was titled Neoiberal Globalization and Climate Chaos.  This exhibit took  place during the High Level Sessions of the UNFCCC meetings 18 – 23 November 2013. The conference was held at the National Stadium in Warsaw, Poland.*1 UNFCCC Gag, Indonesia(This photo was scheduled for the exhibit, but because of increased UN pressure on criticism of the UNFCCC, the photo was not shown.)

The exhibit included thirty photographs documenting Indigenous Peoples, organizations and social movements working for climate justice.  The photographs were taken at events on six continents–from Bali, Indonesia to Espirito Santo, Brazil – Durban, South Africa and Chiapas, Mexico, to name a few.

All photographs by Orin Langelle.  Courtesy Global Justice Ecology ProjectGlobal Forest Coalition, and Langelle Photography.

Above: An Indigenous man with his mouth covered by a UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) gag during a protest at the UN climate talks in Bali, Indonesia.  The gag symbolized their systematic and forceful exclusion from a UN meeting with the UNFCCC Executive Secretary they were invited to the day before.  It also symbolized and their exclusion from the official negotiations even though it is their lands that were being targeted for climate mitigation schemes.

You can view the entire photo exhibit here

Leave a Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Indigenous Peoples, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Political Repression, Warsaw/COP-19

Pete Seeger Photo Essay from Buffalo, NY concert

Pete Seeger  Photo: Langelle/ photolangelle.org

Pete Seeger Photo: Langelle/ photolangelle.org

Note: Orin Langelle is the Board Chair of Global Justice Ecology Project and the Director of Langelle Photography.  Please visit his website to view his most recent photo essay of a recent concert by Pete Seeger at the Western New York Peace Center annual dinner.

To view the full photo essay click on this link

Leave a Comment

Filed under Climate Change, Events, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle

Orin Langelle: Artist of the Month

Note: Orin Langelle is a co-founder of Global Justice Ecology Project and is currently GJEP’s Board Chair.  He is assembling 40 years of his photography that chronicles the movements for social and ecological justice around the world.

From Orin Langelle: I received an email on Friday, 30 August, from Melody Hay, Assistant Editor, TheArtList.com, saying, ‘I found your work to be very fascinating and inspiring.  That said, I would love to offer you the opportunity to be showcased as TheArtList.com’s September 2013 Artist of The Month.’

And on 3 September The ArtList.com Newsletter came out.  Joseph Hollinshead, Editor, TheArtList.com stated, ‘This month we are very excited to showcase Buffalo, NY artist, Orin Langelle, as the September 2013 Artist of the Month… his interview and photography are fascinating and inspiring:’

The Art List: Artist of the Month – September 2013 – Orin Langelle – Buffalo, NY

At the World Social Forum, Belem, Brazil 2009 - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

At the World Social Forum, Belem, Brazil 2009 – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

Orin Langelle is a concerned photographer, who for four decades has been documenting peoples’ resistance to war, corporate globalization, ecological destruction and human rights abuses.

Langelle’s first photographic assignment was to cover the protests against the Vietnam War at the 1972 Republican National Convention in Miami Beach.

He has worked behind rebel lines to document the struggle of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) in Mexico. He also co-produced the film Lacandona: The Zapatistas and Rainforest of Chiapas, Mexico to expose the links between the destruction of the resource-rich Lacandon rainforest and the conflict of the government and the Zapatistas.

Langelle has also documented Indigenous movements in Brazil, Nicaragua, Chile, Paraguay, James Bay, Quebec, Indonesia, Kenya and across the US.

United Nations climate conference protest, Durban, South Africa 2011 - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

United Nations climate conference protest, Durban, South Africa 2011 – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

He has photographed and participated in forest protection campaigns, protests, direct actions and other events at national and international forums including UN climate and other summits, World Bank meetings, the U.S. Democratic and Republican Conventions, the World Water Forum, the World Social Forum, and meetings of the G8 and G20.

Awards: In 1988 and 1989 Langelle received awards from Environmental Action Magazine for “…recognition of photographic excellence in exploring humanity’s effect on the earth and action to protect the environment.

Publications: Langelle’s photographs have appeared in numerous print and online publications from La Jornada, to USA Today, and have illustrated numerous book covers.

Nicaragua man listening in meeting, Bosawas Jungle, Nicaragua 1998 - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

Nicaragua man listening in meeting, Bosawas Jungle, Nicaragua 1998 – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

Exhibits: Langelle’s photography has been displayed in New York City, Buffalo, NY, Boston, Washington, DC, Madison (WI), San Francisco, Santa Cruz (CA), Eugene (OR), Vermont, Copenhagen, Denmark, Amador Hernandez, Chiapas, Mexico, Amsterdam, Netherlands, and Campo Loro, Gran Chaco, Paraguay.

TAL: How and when did you start creating art?
OL : I became active in the struggle to stop the Vietnam War in 1968 following the police riot against nonviolent protesters at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. I began teaching myself photography in addition to being an anti-war organizer and journalist, and my first assignment was documenting the protests at the Republican National Convention in Miami Beach in 1972.

TAL: What media and genres do you work in?
OL : Photography, photojournalism

TAL: Who or what are your influences?
OL : Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Brisson, W. Eugene Smith and other concerned photographers influence my art. Indigenous Peoples around the world standing up against all odds to protect their communities, lands and livelihoods inspire my passion for social and ecological justice.

The Comandante in La Realidad... - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

Comandante in La Realidad… – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

TAL: What was your inspiration for : “Comandante in La Realidad, Chiapas, Mexico—headquarters for the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee, General Command of the EZLN (Zapatista Army of National Liberation)”?
OL : On January 1st, 1994, the Zapatistas, a small group of Indigenous Peoples In Chiapas, Mexico, rose up against the government of Mexico in protest of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which they called “a death sentence for the Indigenous Peoples of Mexico.” The defiance of the Zapatista struggle to defend their land and livelihoods in the face of extreme repression and military might was my inspiration for this photo.

G8 protest, Rostock, Germany 2007 - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

G8 protest, Rostock, Germany 2007 – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

TAL: Describe your creative process.
OL : I attempt to capture, what noted photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson describes as ‘the decisive moment.’ To me this decisive moment is the instant a visual image is recorded—when light, composition and the subject unite. As a concerned photographer, my goal is not just to document and expose the harsh reality of injustice—much of which is linked with the struggle for the land—but to inspire viewers to participate in changing the world, while helping empower those striving for justice because they know that photographs of their struggle are revealed to a larger audience.

Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) protest, Miami, FL 2003 - 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) protest, Miami, FL 2003 – 11 x 14 inches matted and mounted 16 x 20

TAL: What are you working on currently?
OL :  I am currently reviewing and four decades of my work. I am also collaborating with the Clean Air Coalition of Western New York to document the effects of the Peace Bridge that spans the Niagara River and connects the Canada to the U.S. Ever since the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) went into effect in 1994, commercial traffic has increased with trucks idling on the bridge and in customs for hours on the NY side. These toxic diesel fumes are having major impacts on the health of the people in Buffalo, NY. The Latino community, which is closest to the Peace Bridge, is the first and worst impacted. I will document this community and tell the stories of the residents and their suffering due to this unjust situation, with the aim to raise awareness of the problem and help change it.

TAL: What are your near/long term goals as an artist?
OL : My near term goal is collaboration with the Clean Air Coalition of Western NY (described above). My long term goal is to putting my photographs—which document decades of the global struggle for soclal and ecological justice–in order so it can be used to counter the societal amnesia from which we collectively suffer. This is not merely a chronicling of history, but a call out to inspire new generations to participate in the making of a new history. For there has been no time when such a call has been so badly needed.

TAL: Where can people view/purchase your work?
OL : PhotoLangelle.org

All Images © Orin Langelle
All Rights Reserved

Leave a Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Africa, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Commodification of Life, Corporate Globalization, Indigenous Peoples, Latin America-Caribbean, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle, Rights, Resilience, and Restoration, UNFCCC, War

New Langelle Photography Program website launched

“The concerned photographer finds much in the present unacceptable which he tries to alter. Our goal is simply to let the world also know why it is unacceptable“- Cornell Capa (1918-2008)
Young girls in Amador Hernández   Photo: Langelle/GJEP-GFC

Young girls play in Amador Hernández

Today Global Justice Ecology Project is proud to launch the new website PhotoLangelle.org for Langelle Photography, a program dedicated to using the power of photojournalism to expose social and ecological injustice.

The website features the work of photojournalist Orin Langelle.  Langelle is Co-founder of Global Justice Ecology Project and from 2003 to 2012 was the Co-director/Strategist for the organization.  He now is the board chair and is focused on compiling his four decades of concerned photography.

We invite you to tour this beautiful new website, which is loaded with poignant portraits, dramatic protest photos and photos from Indigenous communities all over the world, among many others.

During the march against the Conference of Polluters.  Photo: Langelle/GJEP

Protest during Durban, South Africa’s United Nations Climate Conference, 2011.

For more information, contact: langellePhoto@PhotoLangelle.org

Leave a Comment

Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Independent Media, Photo Essays by Orin Langelle