Tsunami at the Opera …

It never falls to amaze me where (and when) my images turn up in a publication or find another airing.

A couple of months ago I received an email from the most unlikely source … Opera de Lyon in France … who requested the use of an image of mine made way back in January 2005 during the tsunami disaster aftermath in Banda Aceh, Indonesia. They requested a licence to use the pic in their material promoting and supporting this years opera season “I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky” … and they nicely offered (without persuasion) to pay rather royally for the privilege.

The photo was made amongst the rubble of the unspeakable disaster that was Banda Aceh after the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami. It certainly wasn’t the best, the most dramatic or most memorable image that I made covering that massive disaster in Thailand, Myanmar or Indonesia … but it was this specific photo that Opera De Lyon requested to adorn their seasons brochure 2019/20, web site, promotional material and The Theatre de la Croix Rousse opera program. Who am I to argue …

i wasn’t on my own to be selected to have an image grace this years Opera de Lyon season material. They also selected work from highly regarded photojournalists … Bangladesh born Washington DC based photographer Andrew Biraj … and Paris based PJ Véronique de Viguerie.

Opera de Lyon’s rationale for the use of the images was quoted as … “The vitality of opera today – and its relevance – lies essentially in its ability to decipher and to see the world, the world of yesterday and the world of today. Great works and great shows open windows on our time and our news. We wish to present photos that illustrate and counterpoint the works of the program; images that expand and enrich the perception we can have of these operas, and come to open our reflection to the wider world”. So there …

First … but hopefully not the last … time that my images made it to the ‘Opera’. 🙂

Image © Brian Cassey 2005 for Opera de Lyon 2019 … top from the Opera de Lyon web site … below from the Opera de Lyon seasons program for “I was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky”. Sadly both suffered from clumsy cropping.


Opera de Lyon - 'I was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky' - image by Brian Cassey made in the aftermath of the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami in Banda Aceh, Indonesia

Opera de Lyon - 'I was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky' - image by Brian Cassey made in the aftermath of the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami in Banda Aceh, Indonesia


‘Take’ Photography Magazine …

Following on from the huge success of the universally praised initial edition of photography magazine ‘Take’, publisher Andrew Johnstone has just released ‘Take’ edition 2.

Really pleased and humble to be amongst the 26 photographers from Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Argentina and Italy featured in the publication.

Excellent work from all through the 122 pages of images … all wrapped in a great hard cover … and all for just a cent under twenty bucks! Particularly pleased to see works from Jonathan Clifford, Jon Reid and Katrin Koenning also featuring.

My set in ‘Take’ 2 is the pic essay “Soulless in Seoul” which portrays the plight of the homeless in Seoul, South Korea who are being evicted from the Seoul Railway Station. To see it, do yourself a favour and buy a copy of ‘Take’ 2. If 19.99 is beyond your budget my Seoul images can be found here either on my website or on the site of my collective ‘fotostrada’.

To get your copy of ‘Take’ 2 go to the Take Magazine Facebook page here.

Below is an image of the beautiful hard cover of the new ‘Take’ 2 magazine and images of my featured pages.

Images © Take Magazine and Brian Cassey

Walkley Mag Splash …

The Walkley Magazine has published my “Soulless in Seoul” pic essay (retitled “Sleepless in Seoul”) as a double page spread in the centre of this months new edition. A great layout and a great shop window.

The images in the essay show the plight of the hundreds of homeless who are currently being evicted from Seoul Railway Station and precinct by South Korea’s super efficient state rail authority Korail.

Bizarrely, Korail have stated that the homeless pose a ‘terrorist threat’. In the latest twist the newly elected mayor of Seoul has asked Korail to reverse the decision to evict – but Korail have no intention of doing so.

I came across the sorry story during a brief stopover in Seoul whilst returning from exhibiting my work “Cage Dogs of Hong Kong” at the Gwangju Design Biennale in the south of South Korea.

Below I’ve posted an image of the Walkley Magazine spread and one larger image from the essay.

The full “Soulless in Seoul” essay can be viewed on my personal website at https://www.briancasseyphotographer.com/images.php?imagefolder=seoul … and on the web site of my collective ‘fotostrada’ at http://www.fotostrada.com/#/brian-cassey/soulless-in-seoul/BCSeoul1s

© images by Brian Cassey


Soulless in Seoul (2) …

My newest essay “Soulless in Seoul” – on the evictions of homeless in Seoul South Korea (see post below) – is now also available on my personal photojournalism site proper at … https://www.briancasseyphotographer.com/images.php?imagefolder=seoul

Soulless in Seoul …

Whilst spending two days in Seoul South Korea after exhibiting at the Gwangju Design Biennale 2011,  I came across an evolving story that produced a compelling photo essay. Korail – the State owned railway operator – has commenced the forcible eviction of several hundred homeless from the main new Seoul railway station and the original restored 1925 station adjoining. Many of these homeless were victims of various financial crises over the years and, some, long time residents of the station complex.

At present Korail are removing people from the station building from the hours of 1.30am to 4.30am – but the action has only resulted in the homeless bedding down out in the open in the surrounding station precinct and in adjoining underpasses.

Various activists, churches and civic organisations have rallied to support the homeless but Korail has no intention of reversing the decision.

South Korea is one of the most dynamic economies on the planet and hurtling towards a place in the ‘Top Ten’ list … but the States treatment of it’s senior and less fortunate citizens appears less ’21st century’.

I’ve posted the full story and photo essay of 22 images on the ‘fotostrada’ website in “Latest Stories” … and a small selection of just four images below. As soon as time permits the essay will also be posted to my personal web site.

Images © Brian Cassey 2011