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Red Utopia: Photographs of North Korea

Red Utopia: Photographs of North Korea



photographer: G. Kontos
author: Thanasis Moytsopoylos
editor: Thanasis Moytsopoylos, Pinelopi Petsini

Kastaniotis, 2007
256 p.
ISBN 978-960-03-4349-6, [In Print]
Price € 47,70

Red Utopia is an illuminating photographic take on a country that marches to the beat of an all-powerful state ideology. Only the bright colours seen here and there on clothes and buildings offer some contrast to the depressing facade of North Korea. The extraordinary feat that Yannis Kontos accomplishes in these photographs is to pierce the seemingly impenetrable wall of the fortress state and highlight the uniqueness of its fenced-in people. He is not interested in portraying their economic circumstances or their need for the forbidden consumer goods of the West. Instead, he seeks out the human moment, be it happy or otherwise. He records the tenderness that emerges from the extraordinary glances of citizens under military rule, the freedom that peeps through where the regime cannot control it, at times of entertainment or during a simple walk. This is a unique document of a country that clings to the past.

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