Utopia at the Phoenix Brighton
A group of primary and secondary school students in Nigeria say they want to dedicate their careers to the killing and elimination of Boko Haram, one of the most dangerous terrorist groups in the world. ‘Utopia’, taking place at Phoenix Brighton between 1 – 19 August, is a photo exhibition that foregrounds these resilient children.
The children, aged between 10 and 15 years old, revealed this while speaking with Tunde Alabi-Hundeyin, a documentary photographer and doctoral student at the University of Sussex, Brighton, during his recent visit to Nigeria for a 4-week creative project on the representation of children from the Global South.
The result of this trip is ‘Utopia’, a photo exhibition that creates a counter-narrative to the problematic representations of children from the Global South in many charity representations. It shows photos of and by children living in a camp for internally displaced persons in Nigeria.
Having been forcefully evicted from their homes in north-eastern Borno state by Boko Haram terrorists who have also abducted hundreds of schoolchildren, killed tens of thousands of people, and bombed major cities – the children hope for a brighter future.
‘Utopia’ explores the themes of race, representation, resilience, migration, enterprise, imperfection, and beauty; challenging the visual stereotypes of the developing world in global development discourse. It features the photovoice images of these resilient children, enabling them to tell their own stories.
Alabi-Hundeyin, who has worked on a number of child photography projects with UNICEF, also seeks a Utopian end, where children from the Global South will no longer be portrayed as spectacles of pity by the media and by humanitarian organisations.
This exhibition is supported by the University of Sussex Researcher Development Programme’s Public Engagement Fund.
For more information see: https://www.phoenixbrighton.org/events/south-gallery-utopia/
10 – 14 Waterloo Pl. Brighton BN2 9NB