Gardner Photography Fellow, 2010
Over the past six years, Dupont has traveled to Papua New Guinea, photographically documenting its changing face and the powerful impact of globalization on the fabric of its traditional Melanesian society. As the Museum’s 2010 Robert Gardner Photography Fellow, Dupont returned to Papua New Guinea and explored the mountainous Highlands, the serpentine Sepik River and the dangerously gritty capital city, Port Moresby. His photographs and artist’s journals document tremendous social change caused by globalization, HIV-AIDS, migration, poverty, and new wealth.
In his travels across Papua New Guinea—located north of Australia, on the eastern half of the island of New Guinea —Dupont set up temporary outdoor studios and made innovative portrait photographs.
“I use white and black bed sheets to create an outdoor studio that not only captures my sitter but also allows me to reveal the audience gathering and the environment around the sheet," says Dupont. "You feel as if you are on the streets of Mt. Hagen or in a Sepik village."
Dupont's portraits, landscapes, and diaries are a journey through Papua New Guinea's villages, cities, mines, valleys, and traditional tribal ceremonies.
The Peabody Museum presented an exhibition of the Stephen Dupont's work, Stephen Dupont: Papua New Guinea Portraits and Diaries. May 2 through September 2, 2013.
Piksa Niugini: Portraits and Diaries is published by Peabody Museum Press and Radius Books.