Belinda Pratten | Afghanistan (1995)

Archival pigment prints. Edition of 9 + 2AP (30 x 40cm)

All prints signed and dated.

(More prints are available outside the portfolio, enquiries welcome).


This series was not planned. What had been planned was a trip with two photographers/friends, to Quetta, Pakistan, where refugees who had left Afghanistan were living in camps. In India we met a Red Cross worker who told us to “forget Pakistan, go to Kabul”. We took her advice.

Arriving at Kabul airport was like landing in a graveyard for aeroplanes. Bits of wings and tyres and carcasses of planes were strewn across the ground beside the runway. On the ground, a female airport worker looked through my bag and saw it was filled with film canisters. She looked up at me and smiled.

Many of my images from this series tell the story through the eyes of the people. I set out with the intention of focusing on women of Kabul, inspired by that airport worker, but what evolved was a series of portraits of people in institutions, on the street and in private homes.