Afghanistan Embed Kickstarter Project

August 13, 2010

Hi, all four of your who read this.  Important news:  it’s very likely that I will embed (probably in Kandahar!) in Afghanistan for about six weeks this winter.  Which I’ve been working on for about three years so if it happens that will be one very big and very strange Christmas present.

Toward that end, I’ve had to do some fundraising.  The wonderful Goethe Institute may be helping me out with some funding but I still need to raise money for body armor, airfare, insurance and equipment so I’ve launched a Kickstarter project.  Kickstarter is a site where you can fund various art-related projects; goals range from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands; I’ve tried to keep mine low at $2900.  (You either raise all or nothing; if people donate $2850 in the one-month window I get nothing.)  I have until Sept. 12th to collect the money.

Why I want to go: I’ve been photogrpahing military simulations of the Mideast since 2006 and this is the logical endpoint of that project–to put real and fake Afghanistan next to each other.  The other main goal is something that you don’t really see in standard photojournalism: all of the stuff that isn’t a news event, whether it’s soldiers standing around waiting for a mission to start or pictures of the barracks or the chow hall: images, in other words, of what it’s actually like to be a service member in Afghanistan in 2010.

There are lots of pledge rewards you get, starting as low as $10 and including postcards, photos, drawings, paintings, other limited-edition or unique things and even me traveling to your house and cooking you a central Asian dinner and give you a personal slide show.  If you’re interested, visit here:

http://www.kickstarter.com/e/5p2oP/projects/1371821463/two-afghanistans-art-photography-project-and-milit

And I’m trying to nudge people toward the $250 reward, for which you get a ton of stuff and a photo of your choice from here:

http://middledistance.wordpress.com

So I am asking for two things here: 1) for you to donate if you can, but trust me I know what it’s like not to have the money to donate, so then 2) if you could spread the word, and the link, around so that people who might be interested in supporting the project can find out about it.

For a teaser of some of the kinds of images you’ll see from Afghanistan, below I’ve stuck some “Fake Afghanistan” images from my extensive archive.  What follows is all vast landscape stuff because that’s what I’ve been working on lately but there’s quite a lot of everything–I’ve taken literally thousands of images at these simulations.

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