This weekend I presented a paper at the Royal Anthropological Institute's conference on Anthropology and Photography, titled #Instaterremoto: Tracing Crisis through Instagram Photography. As part of the conference I was given the opportunity to showcase my own photography, and exhibited twelve photos under the same title. Here I reproduce that exhibit, which can also be found at the RAI's Flickr feed here.
On the night of 1 April 2014, Alto Hospicio suffered an 8.2 earthquake. The city was without power and water for several days and many were left homeless. Because I am researching social media usage in the city, I have paid particular attention to the photos that (usually young) residents have uploaded to Facebook and Instagram. I began adding my own images to these websites with similar hashtags to contribute to the body of imagery by residents who were were many times calling for more attention and help from the Chilean national government. In many ways, the people of Alto Hospicio felt forgotten, and were using social media to speak to whoever would listen. I took these photographs, featured here, in solidarity with others who were using their smartphone cameras to claim visibility and call for attention to the disaster.