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Stunning Portraits of the Air Pollution Crisis in India

Photographer spotlights India’s air pollution – Global Journalist

Melanie Dornier was disturbed by the air pollution in the Indian city of Gurgaon. So she began photographing people holding x-rays of their lungs.

“We all breathe the same air.”

Melanie Dornier was once a social worker in the United Kingdom and her native France, where she did work like helping refugees navigate the job search process. Then an interest in photography led her to begin combining her interests in serving marginalized people with making pictures.
Dornier grew up in Besançon, a small town in eastern France near the Swiss border. She credits her interest in photography to a great-uncle who had a photography studio, and she received her first camera when she was 4 or 5 years old.

In 2007 Dornier followed her husband from London to India when his company relocated him. It was an impermanent life, and the couple moved several times over the next six years between Europe, the southern Indian city of Bangalore, and Gurgaon outside the capital New Delhi.

It was in Gurgaon that Dornier witnessed India’s alarming levels of air pollution. Disturbed by the problem, she began to produce a series of photos of ordinary Indians holding up x-rays of lungs over their chests in an effort to raise awareness about the consequences of air pollution in a region of India that has some of the most polluted cities in the world.

(Credit: Melanie Dornier)

Dornier, 37, left India in January 2017 with her husband and two young daughters and now resides in the Normandy region of France.
Extracted with grateful thanks from an article in Global Journalist on December 7, 2017.

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