Fine Art Photo Collectors' Gallery - and much more...

The Kunduz Valley, Kunduz Province, Afghanistan, 1975   © Luke Powell



In Defiance of History: Afghanistan 1973 - 2003
Photographs by Luke Powell

On display August 5 - September 18, 2007

Opening reception and gallery talk with Marjorie Speed Powell
Sunday, August 5, 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Photographer Luke Powell captures the beauty and dignity of Afghanistan from the cities in the news to remote villages reachable only on horseback. He photographed the country extensively throughout the 1970s as a tourist and again from 2000 – 2003 in the employ of the United Nations to document minefields, mine victims, and demining efforts. Powell’s images of Afghanistan have been widely exhibited, including shows at the Smithsonian’s Sackler Gallery, the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Manesh Hall in Moscow, and the Fotographie Forum in Frankfurt. Take advantage of this special opportunity to view the images in your own backyard.

Luke Powell was born and raised in North Carolina. He holds a BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master of the Arts of Religion degree from Yale University. When he began photographing Afghanistan, Powell was an ordained minister in the North Carolina Annual Conference of the Methodist Church. He first went abroad to work on archaeological excavations in Israel with a team from the UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Religion. After his third season on the digs, Powell attempted an overland journey from Israel to India. His travel arrangements were thwarted by the war between Pakistan and India. Along with fleeing refugees, Powell rode to safety in Afghanistan by freight car. Stranded in Kabul by the severe winter snows, Powell waited for the roads west to clear and “discovered that this was the jewel of Central Asia, an extraordinary window on the ancient world. There I saw villages remarkably similar to ones we had excavated from thousands of years ago. I wanted to make photographs in Afghanistan so that Americans, charmed by the beauty of the place, would begin to open their hearts to the world of Islam, which they would soon need to understand.”

© 2007 Through This Lens, Inc.