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We have all been stunned by the events in Gaza and Israel. We at the Centre for Contemporary Photography have been particularly monitoring the tragic death toll of photojournalists and journalists, alongside the heartbreaking death toll of civilians.

We have been tracking updates of the deaths of our colleagues in the photography and journalism community whilst reporting on the current conflict, via updates from the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). The CPJ is an independent, nonprofit organization that promotes press freedom worldwide. They work to defend the right of journalists to report the news safely and without fear of reprisal. 

Sadly, the CPJ reports that the past few months have been the deadliest period for journalists since they began gathering data in 1992. This is alongside confirmed reports of journalists being injured, arrested, and further reports of assaults, threats, cyberattacks, censorship, and killings of journalist’s family members.

In response, for the coming weeks we will be selling a special edition tote bag (on our website) to raise money for the CPJ. This tote bag features a quote by Ariella Azoulay (author, art curator, filmmaker, and theorist of photography and visual culture):

All profits from sales of this tote bag will be donated to the CPJ.

Quote reads – One needs to stop looking at a photograph and instead start watching it. The verb ‘to watch’ is usually used for regarding phenomena or moving pictures. It entails dimensions of time and movement that need to be reinscribed into the interpretation of the still photographic image. When and where the subject of the photograph is a person who has suffered some form of injury, a viewing of the photograph that reconstructs the photographic situation and allows a reading of the injury on others becomes a civic skill, not an exercise in aesthetic appreciation. 

(Ariella Azoulay, ‘The Civil Contract of Photography‘, 2008)

We recognise the sacrifices these photographers and journalists have made in covering this heartbreaking conflict, and we hope for the release of all hostages, an immediate and permanent ceasefire and a negotiated peaceful resolution.

You can buy one of these tote bags from the CCP Shop >

You can donate separately to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Click here >

The CPJ has an updating list of all photographers and journalists killed, injured or missing that you can access. Click here >

More about the CPJ: In their quest for a free media, CPJ denounces press freedom violations, meets with heads of state and high-ranking officials, spearheads or advises on diplomatic efforts, and works with other organizations to ensure that justice prevails when journalists are imprisoned or killed. CPJ also provides comprehensive, life-saving support to journalists and media support staff working around the world through up-to-date safety and security information and rapid response assistance. In 2022 CPJ helped free at least 150 imprisoned journalists, and helped secure convictions on the murders of 12 journalists, They also provided assistance to more than 520 journalists in at least 49 countries.