Liminality

The Ex I-Have-Eccentric-Jobs-And-Want-To-Share-Their-Bizarre-Stories
Blog turned I-Quit-Those-Jobs-&-Am-Now-Putzing-Around-The-World-With-A-Camera Blog

by Amanda Mustard

www.amandamustardphoto.com

amandamustard:

My POV/BTS video from the 2013 Pride Parade in NYC is finished, check it out!

amandamustard:

Nanjing Massacre survivors Li Gaoshan and Wang Suhhua. Mr. Li was an orphan who joined the military at 13 under the identity of a deserter. His story is exceptionally moving. He lasted a single day in after the city was occupied before he was captured and put in a lineup to be shot. He survived because he was shorter than the rest, and hid under the bodies until he could flee. He was recaptured by Japanese a bit later, and was put in another lineup where each person was shot. When the soldiers reached him, they stopped to laugh at him, as he was wearing the deserter’s uniform which was very large on him. The decided to take him back with them and make him their stableboy. After a week, he escaped and ran into a random home, where a woman found him and took him to the Safety Zone with her, and adopted him after the massacre.
He later married Ms Wang, also an orphan, and one of teacher Minnie Vautrin’s refugees in the Safety Zone. I’ve studied much of Vautrin’s work and read her diaries, and it was incredible to meet one of the people she saved in Nanjing. They’ve lived a quiet, modest life in Nanjing, and have been happily married for 63 years.

amandamustard:

Nanjing Massacre survivors Li Gaoshan and Wang Suhhua. Mr. Li was an orphan who joined the military at 13 under the identity of a deserter. His story is exceptionally moving. He lasted a single day in after the city was occupied before he was captured and put in a lineup to be shot. He survived because he was shorter than the rest, and hid under the bodies until he could flee. He was recaptured by Japanese a bit later, and was put in another lineup where each person was shot. When the soldiers reached him, they stopped to laugh at him, as he was wearing the deserter’s uniform which was very large on him. The decided to take him back with them and make him their stableboy. After a week, he escaped and ran into a random home, where a woman found him and took him to the Safety Zone with her, and adopted him after the massacre.

He later married Ms Wang, also an orphan, and one of teacher Minnie Vautrin’s refugees in the Safety Zone. I’ve studied much of Vautrin’s work and read her diaries, and it was incredible to meet one of the people she saved in Nanjing. They’ve lived a quiet, modest life in Nanjing, and have been happily married for 63 years.

amandamustard:

Nanjing Massacre Survivor Cao Zhikun, who was a civilian shot with a dum dum bullet by Japanese forces in 1937. It took 3 years for the wound to heal, as his family couldn’t afford medical care. He didn’t get three bone fragments removed until 52 laters. The photo he is holding is of his mother, two siblings, and himself taken November 27 1937, a couple weeks before the massacre.

amandamustard:

Nanjing Massacre Survivor Cao Zhikun, who was a civilian shot with a dum dum bullet by Japanese forces in 1937. It took 3 years for the wound to heal, as his family couldn’t afford medical care. He didn’t get three bone fragments removed until 52 laters. The photo he is holding is of his mother, two siblings, and himself taken November 27 1937, a couple weeks before the massacre.

brassicaalba:

cameralens:

Amanda Mustard/Zuma Press
Egyptians filled Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Tuesday for another night of protests against a court verdict that spared the life of former leader Hosni Mubarak, and over the candidacy of Mr. Mubarak’s last prime minister in the presidential runoff.


So I haven’t been posting my images on here, because ZUMA Press is now representing me, and there’s all this exclusivity stuff(pardon my eloquence) that I need to look into, before delving back into the blog realm. Check my Facebook page, www.facebook.com/amandamustardphoto for updates!

brassicaalba:

cameralens:

Amanda Mustard/Zuma Press

Egyptians filled Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Tuesday for another night of protests against a court verdict that spared the life of former leader Hosni Mubarak, and over the candidacy of Mr. Mubarak’s last prime minister in the presidential runoff.

So I haven’t been posting my images on here, because ZUMA Press is now representing me, and there’s all this exclusivity stuff(pardon my eloquence) that I need to look into, before delving back into the blog realm. Check my Facebook page, www.facebook.com/amandamustardphoto for updates!

Protests in Tahrir - Islamists Against Omar Suleiman’s Candidacy

I made the convenient two minute walk with journalist Bryan Philips to Tahrir Square on Friday to shoot the massive Islamist gathering denouncing the entry of SCAF-supported Omar Suleiman into the Presidential race. His old-regime association and values aren’t exactly palatable to the general population, and the combination of Muslim Brotherhood and Salafi supporters didn’t hesitate to assemble by the thousands to say so. 

For whatever reason, the aura of Tahrir was much more peaceful than the protest the previous Friday, where the Islamist Hazem Abu Ismail supporters gathered to deny the accusations that the ultraconservative candidate’s late mother had American citizenship. This Friday’s activists wanted their opinion to be heard, therefore were very admissive to my camera. After a long series ‘Just two more minutes’, Photographer Hamada Ehradam and I managed to weasel our way into the protest headquarters, and onto the stage to shoot. It wasn’t one of the more terrible moments of my life, having a front row seat to a scene straight off BBC.

Bryan’s article and my photo were published here, do read for a more thorough description of the day’s events.

Mikele - Cairo

Without a conscious attempt, our flat in Downtown Cairo has become a haven for a emotional, mental, and social freedom. On a nightly basis, there are between 1 and 13(one night, about 80) people here who can feel safe to {responsibly} smoke, drink, sing, dance, discuss, and to simply just be, in whatever ways they feel they are constrained outside by Egyptian society. It’s a beautiful thing, our own personal Warhol Factory, and provides a steady stream of fascinating material that should properly become a novel. Or at least, ‘Skins: Cairo’.

Mikele is a Sicilian student in Cairo studying Arabic on a scholarship, and is one of our regular ‘housepets’. One night, he came knocking at our door about an hour after he had left after what became another party. We most appropriately were drunkenly dancing to Justin Bieber’s ‘Baby’ in the living room, when he came stumbling in, covered in blood and dirt. He had very obviously been beaten in the street, and possibly bashed in the side of his head, judging by the deep gash above his ear. He had no recollection(and still does not) of what, where, why, and how this had happened. Only that he no longer had his backpack, which had his passport in it.

The next few erratic hours will forever be branded in my mind. Almost every point in the grand array of emotion was exhibited by at least one of us 7 over the course of those few hours. It was a roller coaster, everyone on a different high or low, and rapidly moving to the opposite. I, personally, was presented with the first real-time ‘news worthy’ opportunity that I immediately wanted to shoot. It was an epic personal battle, having to resist the urge to pick up my camera, and take it into the bathroom where he stood shirtless in textbook shock, covered in blood, surrounded by the rush of panicked friends.

I, out of respect for a friend, did not take my camera in that night, which was like a knife through my journalistic heart. Because this was it. That was the moment that I know I want to be shooting for the rest of my life. Capturing the rawest form of humanity: Who we become in crisis. It was an irresistible force that kept my eyes focused sharply on the thousands of emotionally-fused images that were hitting my retina every minute. It was torture, especially considering that my personal safety was not as risk, which a luxury not to be had in a protest or clash. It was perfect and safe. But the element of respect and friendship came first. The morning after, he graciously allowed me to take some portraits, which I am more than content with.

It was an incredible night, one of the many created in Cairo that I will never forget. We all lived and learned, hopefully, how to avoid this danger in the upcoming months.

Another piece of me changed that night: Justin Bieber’s ‘Baby’ will never quite be the same.

Parkour Egypt - Training

I finally joined the guys for one of their training sessions, as I always putz along for the much smaller practices that are exclusive to the 12 or so trainers. I was thoroughly impressed with the turnout, I feel I can safely say there were around 80 or so kids. They began with some intense(and mildly erratic) cardio, filling the dusty university gym with the magical sound of synchronous stomping. They spent the remainder of the time divided up into groups according to skill. The level of passion and participation that the ‘students’ present is inspiring.

Maybe I’m just used to my gym class in high school, where the majority if us flopped around the gym indolently, praying there would be another phony bomb threat to get us out of the class.

Christina

I found the perfect friend when I was in Chiang Mai, Thailand, who conveniently is now stationed back home in New York. She was lovely enough to putz on out to hang for a bit before I flew to Cairo. We went to the vegan Champ’s Bakery in Brooklyn, where we devoured a plethora of delicious desserts and caught up on all of the essentials. I am so happy to have her in my life, she’s someone you know is there to stay. Who knew what lovely home-based humans are lurking around on the other side of the planet?