An immersive photographic display that lets visitors experience photographs disappearing in the blink of an eye launches this week, to raise awareness of the blinding eye disease trachoma.
The exhibition, BLINK!, is being held by Sightsavers to raise awareness of the charity’s campaign to eliminate the disease, and will be in London’s Oxo Tower Gallery from Wednesday 9–Sunday 13 October. It also launches a new UK Aid Match fundraising appeal, with donations made between 9 October 2019 and 9 January 2020 to be matched by the UK government, up to £2 million.
The matched funds raised through UK Aid Match will support Sightsavers eye health projects in Uganda and Malawi, delivering eye care services, particularly for marginalised groups including women, and those living with disabilities.
Famous photographers including fashion photographer, Nick Knight, the late David Goldblatt, and photo journalists Kate Holt, Georgina Cranston, and, Tommy Trenchard have donated images of a sight they would miss if they lost their vision, to be gradually and permanently worn away with each and every blink of visitors’ eyes during the exhibition.
For people suffering with trachoma, each blink can be agony and with advanced trachoma, brings them closer to blindness. To echo this experience, every time the viewer blinks in the exhibition, the photograph they are looking at will alter, slowly degrading and eventually distorting to such an extent that it is gone forever.
Dr Caroline Harper, Chief Executive of Sightsavers, said:
“We are really excited about this amazing exhibition which will provide a unique way of sharing with people just how devastating blinding trachoma can be. Visitors will see some fantastic art, but we hope the smart technology behind the pieces will help people appreciate the value of sight. We also hope it will encourage them to donate so that Sightsavers and partners can help countries eliminate this horrible disease.
“We are incredibly grateful to all those who have supported our End in Sight campaign so far, and are pleased to confirm that all donations between 9 October and 9 January will be doubled by the UK government.”
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