Bronze / 2018 / Press / Feature Story

Behind The Diamonds

  • Prize
    Bronze in Press/Feature Story
  • Photographer
    Hiroshi Aoki

Central African Republic (CAR) has been engulfed by a civil war. It is often described as a religious conflict as a major alliance of rebel forces, Seleka, consists mainly of Muslims while the other group, Anti-balaka, is primarily Christians. There are, however, other causes of conflict such as historic rift between powerful South and marginalized North and antagonism based on tribes and languages. In addition to those differences, abundant natural resources, especially diamonds, have played a significant role in the conflict. What is happening at diamond mines in CAR where warring factions compete for their ownership? Diamonds add splendor to shining moments like marriage proposals, anniversaries, award ceremonies and dinner parties. But their beauty and charm may also play an evil role. A behind story of the miracle gem that have attracted human beings.

Hiroshi Aoki (Japanese, b.1976) http://www.hiroshiaoki-photo.com

Over the thirteen-year his career photographed many of recent history's defining human rights and conflict issues. Aoki's work reflects his belief in photojournalism's role as an instrument of witness and memory to incite change, and the necessity of telling the stories of people who are rendered powerless to tell their own.

Aoki's work takes the viewer to the limits of human despair, dignity, suffering and hope. His images are relevant to us all, because they form a chronicle of the time in which we live, but at times do not dare to recognize.

Aoki has received awards from the Japanese photography industry and his works collected in a museum and some galleries. Aoki's work has been widely exhibited, and has been showed by some books.
In 2012, Aoki released �HEAL AFRICA�(TOSEI publishing Co., Ltd), It telling about human despair, dignity, suffering and hope in Africa including Somalia, Congo, Sudan, Chad etc. Need to share the necessity of telling the stories of people who are powerless. Aoki believe that his works to change the world.

Aoki has been started a project �THE CHORD� to contribute to the society from 2017. It is fusion of art and the journalism. For the purpose art and journalism perform collaboration and associate with society deeply. He lives Yokohama, Japan with his wife. Hiroshi Aoki works as a freelancer on both commercial as journalistic projects. He is based in Japan.