Thursday, January 12, 2012

Burmese Daze

Here is a short piece that I made as I tried to interpret what was happening around me during the trip that photographer, Daniel Grant and I made to Myanmar / Burma in July 2011.

It was a little surreal …sitting in a Rangoon hotel room watching opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi deliver her secretly recorded and smuggled Reith Lectures on the BBC. Yet, downstairs in the lobby and on the streets things appeared much the same as they have for decades. Despite being South East Asia's most resource rich country you couldn't tell looking around... the profits from the massive investment that is occurring must be either going back to China or straight into the pockets of the generals... visually it's like stepping into a time-warp.

Myanmar’s generals may have swopped their uniforms for suits during the elections of 2010. But have they really changed their attitude? Things such as emails, the internet and cell phones are engineered and priced to make it very difficult for the ordinary Burmese to gain access to these technologies. Control of the media still enforced... and be careful who you talk to if you want to discuss politics. Is Burma still trapped in the land of George Orwell or is this a new beginning? Recent events may indicate that change is happening... time will tell.

Welcome to the… Burmese Daze