Photography

Projects:

  1. Portraits of Unorganised Workers in Karnataka, India. Photos 2014 – 15, Bangalore and Karnataka, India. © Sabina von Kessel
  2. Inside/Out, Life of Children inside and outside of gated communities in Bangalore. Photos 2010 – 2012, Yelahanka NT, Kenchenahalli, North Bangalore.
    © Sabina von Kessel
  3. Life in Utopia, Summer in Bavaria, Germany. Photos 2013 – 2016, Munich and surroundings. © Sabina von Kessel

1. Portraits of Unorganised Workers

The portraits of the Unorganised Workers were conceptualised to give the campaign a human face, show and connect the participants with the brand.

Background: Prevailing social security benefits such as health insurance in India are restricted to workers in the formal sector. However, about 93% of the entire workforce accounting for close to 400 Million people works in the informal sector. The overwhelming majority of these unorganised workers do not have access to adequate and reliable social security.
For the photo bank of GIZ and for the brand campaign for Single-Window-Service, Social Security for Unorganised Workers.

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Construction worker near Mangalore.
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Found across Asia, these nuts are harvested from the Areca palm and are chewed for their warming glow and stimulating properties. But the short-lived benefits come at a terrible cost.
High rates of oral cancer are destroying the lives of many who buy betel nuts, often decades after their first taste.
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Worker in a sawmill near Mangalore.
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Agricultural worker in Karnataka

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Betel nut harvesting
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Tile and brick making in a village in Karnataka
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Fish worker at Mangalore harbour
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Vegetable seller in Bangalore’s KR market
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Boy sells mops in Doddabalapur
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Construction worker in Bangalore
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Widow with no pension
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Worker in an iron ore mine
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Worker at KR market
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Kitchen helper in a small town hotel
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Worker in a saw mill
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Betel nut harvesting
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Lime seller at KR market in Bangalore
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Agarbatti roller in Bangalore
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Rice planter
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Beedi maker
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The cottage industry of Beedi making provides a small income for these women near Mangalore.
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Beedi maker in the Muslim community
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Bus driver in Doddabalapur

2. INSIDE/OUT

Inside/Out, Life of Children inside and outside of gated communities in Bangalore. Photos 2010 – 2012, Yelahanka, Bangalore. Photos © Sabina von Kessel

A photo essay on children inside and outside of gated communities in Bangalore. Children inside gated communities and children “on the other side of the wall” never intermingle with each other. Migrant construction worker and their children live often in front of the gated communities in tin sheet huts, while construction work is still going on. Within the direct neighbourhood children are often only seperated by a wall: on one side they are splashing in pools, on the other side children don’t have access to water and other basic facilities like toilets or bathrooms. Older sisters and brothers watch younger siblings, while both parents are working on the construction site, and have no access to education. The third group of children lives in the peri-urban, a fast changing, hybrid landscape of fragmented urban and rural characteristic.
Exhibited at a conference on urban development in Valand Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

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Only a wall separates different worlds
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High rise gated communities are mushrooming in North Bangalore
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On the brand new playground
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Girl in a new gated community
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Most gated community have a pool
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In the pool
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Plastic toys
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Enjoying Barbie
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“Daddy’s little rockstar”
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Enjoying new middle-class lifestyle
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and a German sausage dog

Inside/Out: On the other side of the “gated”

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Women from Bihar are building the new luxury houses on the golf course, near Nandi Hills, North Bangalore.
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A new gated community is build by migrant workers who live in tin sheet huts with “outdoor bathroom” in Shivanahalli Village, North Bangalore

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Ready to start interiors: non-existing hygienic facilities and toilets make life very difficult for the construction workers, especially the women and girls

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Migrant workers come mostly from far away and don’t speak the local languages, which hinders them to send their children to school

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No school or kindergarten for these children

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The only playground
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This 9 year old girl’s greatest wish was “going to school”, but she had to watch the little brother every day, while both parents were working on the construction site

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Boy watching the younger sibling, while both parents are working
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They love to play without supervision
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She takes responsibility for the brother day and night
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Electricity is a luxury and not available in every hut

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Inside/Out: Children in the rural-urban transition zone

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The city is growing fast
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Fields are suddenly worth a fortune
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Kenchanahalli is still a village while in the neighbourhood luxury communities are mushrooming
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Sunday morning in Kenchanahalli
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Boys from Kenchanahalli with a “Bauhaus”-style luxury community in the background
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He collected firewood for his mother to cook breakfast in Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Yelahanka NT, North Bangalore
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Sunday morning, the boy woke up and grabbed his best friend for a cuddle
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Sunday morning, the girl is trying out a new rangoli pattern
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Family in Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Yelahanka, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Kenchanahalli, North Bangalore
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Yelahanka NT, North Bangalore

3. Life in Utopia, Summer in Bavaria, Germany

Coming from India for a few weeks to spend the summer holidays in Bavaria, Germany, seemed to me like a trip into a strange utopian country. Even in the center of Munich people enjoy hot summer days and dive in the cold river Isar with its cristal clear water. The Bavarian lakes shimmering in surreal colours attract people in thousands.
Photos © Sabina von Kessel, published in Die Zeit

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Children near Munich
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At the riverbanks of the Isar in Munich
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Local children enjoy one of the smaller Bavarian lakes, the Wörthsee
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In Seehausen at the Staffelsee
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Isar, Munich
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At the riverbanks of the Isar, Munich
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At the riverbanks of the Isar, Munich
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At the riverbanks of the Isar, Munich
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Boat on the Ammersee
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Ammersee
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Baby in the Ammersee
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Seehausen, Staffelsee
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At the Ammersee
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At the riverbanks of the Isar, Munich
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Gathering courage to explore the Wörthsee, near Starnberg in Bavaria
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Boy and his turtle in the Wörthsee, former Ausee, near Starnberg in Bavaria
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Boys in traditional attire in Seehausen, Staffelsee
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