With over 30 years experience as a photographer, Lisa Kristine has documents the issue of modern slavery in more than 100 countries in six continents. Kristine, an American humanitarian photographer who won the Lucie Humanitarian award back in the year 2013 uses the power of the visual communication as a mode of activism.
Living in the era of convergence, the usage of plain text with statistics and statements from the officials no longer works in conveying the message of awareness to the audience. But instead, the usage of visual communication that conveys both the message and visual simultaneously is more powerful and suitable in our information-saturated society.
The usage of photography that acts as a universal language that is understood by everyone despite the differences in their social background can be used as a medium of activism to create awareness in our society. The usage of photographs as a medium of activism can also create an emotional connection to the audience as it showcased the human side of the issue that is a contrast to what is reported in the news. We often see the issue of modern day slavery as something interconnected to a bigger issue such as an economic and diplomatic issue that we tend to overlook that those who are involved in the issue is also part of us, humans.
The photographs capture through the lens of Lisa Kristine did just that. Kristine tells the story of modern slavery through the images she captured. Showing the harsh reality of the issue the system that claimed demolished back the 19th Century. She showcases the faces of those involved: men, women and children together with the stories behind their portraits. The conditions and the suffering are all captured through the lens as a witness to the world of what is happening behind the new form of slavery that prevails in our society despite being claimed the opposite.
Passionate about the cause, Kristine collaborates with a non-government organisation Free The Slaves in their efforts to create a global awareness to break the chain of slavery. She also published five books on modern slavery and has been the subject of four documentaries. Through her images, she is able to generate financial capital and social awareness for the issue that is close to her heart. With the wide diversity of subjects, Kristine hopes to be able to combat the issue of modern day slavery one photograph at the time because at the end of the day, we are all humans and no one deserves suffering and to be treated like a commodity.
The video below features a talk by Lisa Kristen on Modern Slavery together with the images she captured as witnesses for the world to see.