강제욱 · Kang Jeauk
Kang Jeauk(1977~) studied Sculptures at the Art School of Seoul National University, and decides to pursue his childhood dream of becoming a documentary photographer. Since then, he has been photographing not only out of curiosity but as a witness for the reality that people face around the world. Focusing on the themes of anthropogeography, environment, and history, his works are published through various media. His first documentary projects, 『Remains of Balhae』 and 『Site of Anti-Japanese Movement』, were taken in Manchuria in 1999. After focusing on the Central Asia including Tibet, he left Korea and volunteered to be carpentry teacher in a small rural village called Neembucu in Paraguay as a member of the Korea International Cooperation Agency(KOICA). After returning to Korea, he traveld various parts of the work to work on various global environments and the climate change. About 10 years of the work was published in 2017 as a photograph collection entitled 「The Planet」(Noonbit Publishing Co.)」.
Desertification in Mongolia
Gobi Desert, Inner Mongolia, 2010-2011
The progress of desertification is faster and more intimidating than what ordinary people suspect. So called ‘Earth’s Cancer,’ desertification is turning six million hectare of Earth’s surface into desert every year. This project has photographed the various regions of Gobi desert throughout the five trips since 2000 to capture the seriousness of the desertification. Desertification is a product of the people living in nearby city, who refuse to live in harmony with nature while being obsessed with the desire of consumption. The root of this disease called desertification lies in the excessive cutting of trees in the rainforest for palm oil, wood, and pulp, overuse of water, and enormous carbon emission. In the end, the final destination of the consumption is metropolis. Embracing the Gobi Desert, Mongolia has the climate that is not suitable to bear forests. Rather than planting trees, planning meadows and bush would be a better means in preventing the desertification.
Great Flood and Typoon
Ayuttaya, Thailand, 2011/ Leyte Island, Philippines, 2013/ Orango Island, Philippines, 2012
Documented are the great flood of 2011 and the most powerful typhoon in the history of observation called ‘Haiyan.’ The great flood had swallowed the city of Ayuttaya in northern Thailand, and ‘Haiyan’ had swapped the city of Leyte with the wind speed of 379km/h. We urbanites give off carbon daily through the tremendous amount of consumption. Cities are causing global warming and that climate change cuases massive natural disasters, thereby threatening the very lives of our own kind. Although city is the main cause of weather change, urbanites do not feel the consequences yet. The only ones who have to live in the damage of typhoon are the ones who live in harmony with nature, like the people in Leyte Island. Our desires for more consumption and better convenience are taking away their homes and lives, and yet we still sit in front of TV and watch their pain. Out of sympathy, we often offer a little financial aid but that is all. In order to truly appeal our remorse, we would have to change our lifestyle and system to realize the lower carbon emission.