Author(s): Seawright, Paul
Publisher: Imperial War Museum
Abstract: Book Description: The Imperial War Museum commissioned two contemporary artists to respond to the terrorist attacks of September 11th and the war in Afghanistan. Paul Searwright was the first to go, in June 2002. He has responded to the painful and extraordinary challenge of the situation in the country with profound imagination and sensitivity. Avoiding the trappings of an exoticising vision, typified by the media's portrayal of Afghanistan as a spectacle of ruins, Seawright's photographs are spare and understated. His response to these heavily mined desert landscapes, extends and reworks the distinctive aesthetic established by his earlier photographs of contested, politically contaminated landscapes in his home city of Belfast and more recently on the fringes of various European cities.