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Beauty In Chaos…
MICHAEL ACKERMAN’s End Time City Photo Essay

End Time City is the name of the intense portrait book created by MICHAEL ACKERMAN in 1999. His journey took him to the Indian city of Benares (Varanasi), the holy City of Light on the shore of the Ganges. When I look at his photos all I can do is marvel at his work. Being that these pictures are in black in white, it only adds their power!

All photos from DOP

I had a completely raw, heart-felt, visceral engagement with the city. Almost every night that I spent in Benares I would go to sleep very, very desperate to wake up and have another chance to absorb what was there and connect with it. The city of Benares is an intense combination of fairy tale and nightmare. It is a very holy place to people and every day they come there by the hundreds, or thousands. It’s a never ending pilgrimage. At the same time it’s such a dark place where death is ever present. There’s just this poetic chaos to it, a beautiful urgency.



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