Ashkan Shabani

Freelance Photographer
Location: Istanbul
Nationality: Turkey
Biography: I'm a self-educated photographer and visual storyteller based in Turkey. When I was a teenager I started photography by taking family pictures. In 2016, I started working as a photographer for a local news agency called DiyarMirza which led... read on
Public Story
Copyright ashkan shabani 2021
Updated 05/30/20
The first day I heard about Corona's arrival in Iran, I decided to cover this international crisis in Iran. In the following days, I was allowed to take photos at one of the covid-19 reference hospitals. That night, I took off my gloves and a non-standard normal mask and went to the hospital. I was going to take photos of cleaning up the hospital environment by Revolutionary guards. While photographing disinfection, I was confronted with the unhealthy environment of the hospital. The corpses of people who had died with covid-19 had been released throughout the hospital yard, and the patients' companions were freely moving around without any care. I was very scared because I didn't have the proper equipment for that situation and I was worried about the transmission of the disease to my family. So after taking my photos, I called one of my friends and decided to quarantine myself at his house for a while so that I would not be transmitted the disease to other members of my family, especially my mother who had pulmonary problems if I got the disease. The next day, I was sitting alone at my friend's house thinking that something very wrong had happened this year. The terrible floods of April, the popular protests in November with 1300 deaths, the destruction of the unmanned passenger plane and the now-infamous enemy that is killing a large number of people every day and now I have to remain in self-imposed quarantine and all of my plans for the future I had been blown away by my summer immigration from Iran to my photography projects, and my future no longer mattered to me and I didn't know what to do. I was very angry and scared. Angry because I'm in a country where mismanagement fails to kill people and their dreams, and I was afraid of a futureless and what else will happen in the new year.

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By Ashkan Shabani / Iran — Iran is a country where half of its population is deprived of their rights, while being unable to follow..
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