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'Dying To Breathe' Shown at Canada's Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival


Event Date:

May 1 - 31, 2016
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China’s deadly mining accidents hit the international news headlines frequently. But the country's...

Media file: silicosis-portraits-collage01001.jpg
He Quangui, a former gold miner, died from complications related to silicosis, an irreversible but preventable disease he contracted from years of working in the mines. Image by Sim Chi Yin. China, 2015.

A photograph from grantee Sim Chi Yin's Pulitzer Center-sponsored project "China: Dying to Breathe" will be showcased in a public installation during the month of May at the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival in Toronto.

"China: Dying to Breathe" intimately explores the life of former Chinese gold miner He Quangui and his struggle with silicosis. Chi Yin spent four years documenting He's life and produced the short film "Dying to Breathe" with Tan Siok Siok. He contracted silicosis, an irreversible but preventable respiratory illness caused by inhaling silica dust, while working in small, unregulated mines in Henan Province in central China. An estimated 6 million Chinese miners suffer from the debilitating disease pneumoconiosis—of which silicosis is one form.

Chi Yin's Pulitzer Center-supported reporting project explores China's top occupational disease, pneumoconiosis, through the struggles of gold miners like He. The short film is the result of Chi Yin's many hours spent with He and his family, witnessing the joys and heartache especially as He struggled with the final stages of the disease.

Chi Yin's photography will be placed among the work of 19 other freelance photographers who formed a community called Dysturb in order to jointly place current international photojournalism in public spaces. Their public installation for the festival will be in Toronto's Kensington Market/Chinatown Area.

"Dying to Breathe" at the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival in Toronto
Sunday, May 1 to Tuesday, May 31
Kensington Market/Chinatown Area
Toronto, Canada


navy halftone illustration of a female doctor with her arms crossed


Health Inequities

Health Inequities