Non-Governmental Imagination

Photography By Blind People Interactive Game This Weekend In NYC
March 14, 2007, 11:47 pm
Filed under: Imagination, Visionaries

Do you live in NYC? Are you interested in photography, blind people or photography by blind people? If so, check out the Seeing Beyond Sight Photo Challenge and Party this Saturday from 2-5pm in Brooklyn. The idea is to blindfold yourself and wander around your world, taking pictures of what you see/feel. You can always do it on your own, but this event is more social.

Seeing Beyond Sight is a fascinating project by Tony Deifell. Basically, he gave cameras to blind teenagers and taught them about photography:

The students would ask questions about their surroundings, feel their subjects, and listen carefully to the hush and noise around them.

It was as if they were listening for “sound shadows.”

When I saw Leuwynda’s pictures of the sidewalk, I thought they were a mistake. Perhaps she had intended to capture a classmate or one of the large oak trees scattered across the campus. I was wrong. As soon as Leuwynda had her camera, she knew what she wanted to do – photograph the cracks in the sidewalk.

The pictures were proof of the damage, and she sent them along with a letter to the Superintendent. “Since you are sighted,” Leuwynda wrote, “you may not notice these cracks. They are a big problem since my white cane gets stuck.” Leuwynda asked for the cracks to be fixed – and they were.

The fact that I had not noticed the cracks in the sidewalks at Governor Morehead School has stayed with me for years. Leuwynda’s story is about more than cracks in a sidewalk; it is about all the cracks that go unnoticed.

I really don’t know many people in NYC, but if you do, spread the word about this little adventure this coming weekend. I’d go if it wasn’t 3000 miles away.

–cross-posted at NetSquared.

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