Project 4 · documents of conflict and suffering

The work of Gilles Peress: Farewell to Bosnia

BOSNIA. Ahmici. 1993. [2]
BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA. 1993. The legs of a female war victim. [1]





Documents of war and suffering are never easy to observe and give rise to the famous phrase ‘compassion fatigue’, very often.

In the case of the above images, one question posed to us was which of the two different types of imagery illicit a more complex or diverse response? My first response usually to any scene of war or abject suffering is anger, based on the knowledge that someone is responsible and that a line has been crossed. The desire for retribution is the typical immediate response. Later, for example looking at the prayer tower collapsed onto a house roof, I might have a different response than that of an injured human body.

This is partly due to the spectacle of the legs, above being so obviously due (as the images are contextualised in the war) to human madness, whereas the later photo is not necessarily the cause of human negative emotions in the form of war.


  1. image 1. Peress, G.Bosnia and Herzegovina (1993) Magnum photos [online] [accessed, May 2020image 1. Peress, G.Bosnia and Herzegovina (1993) Magnum photos
  2. image 2. Peress, G.Bosnia and Herzegovina (1993) Magnum photos [online] [accessed, May 2020image 1. Peress, G.Bosnia and Herzegovina (1993) Magnum photos [online] 

Published by Truevisionphotography

I'm a student photographer studying through the OCA a UK based arts university. I'm in the foundation year of my studies and enjoying it immensely. I'm also a yoga teacher and co-founder of Bodhiyoga a buddhism based yoga teacher training program that runs in the UK and Spain each year. As a photographer I'm interested in all forms of fine art. I find the arts really important in my life. I love nature and aim to be in the outdoors as much as I can. Generally I think that all the different strands of my life are flowing to towards self development in the greatest sense of the term. The arts, buddhist practice yoga and meditation are all tools to that end. I feel committed to communication the these values in the world both through the visual arts as well as teaching.

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