Johnny Miller is a documentary photographer and filmmaker who has always highlighted urban, cultural, and social issues in his works. In the project entitled, “Unequal Scenes”, the photographer visualized social and economic disparity around the world through aerial images. The purpose of the project is to portray global issues of inequality as objectively as possible and to call attention to it through the art of photography.
We at Bright Side present the most striking pictures taken by this photographer from a bird’s-eye view.
Johannesburg, South Africa
The series began when Miller moved to Cape Town, South Africa from the U.S. in 2012 to study anthropology. A few years later he expanded the project taking hundreds of drone photos to show the contrast between poor and rich neighborhoods in Mexico, India, Tanzania, Kenya, etc.
Cape Town, South Africa
During the apartheid, a number of roads, buffer zones, and other barriers were constructed in different cities of South Africa to separate people by race. Even though the apartheid ended in 1994, many of these barriers and distinctions between poor and wealthy settlements are still evident in this part of the world. In 2016, Miller captured the urban legacy and social effects of apartheid from a new perspective.
Mumbai, aka Bombay, is the capital city of the Indian state of Maharashtra. It is the most crowded city in India with a population of around 22 million. Mumbai is a city of contradictions where extreme poverty exists alongside extreme wealth. Dharavi slum is one of the most famous slums in the world almost entirely made of grey concrete. According to the latest data, the percentage of people living in slums is estimated to be 55% of Mumbai’s population.
Mexico City, Mexico
Mexico’s capital is the most populous city in North America. The city struggles with many social, economic and environmental issues. In the last picture captured from the drone, you can see a private school in a wealthy neighborhood which features tennis, basketball, and a well-maintained pool, whereas next door there is only one misshapen soccer patch.
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Dar es Salaam is considered to be Africa’s fastest growing city, projected to reach a population of 6.2 million by 2025. The shots taken from above clearly show how wealth is juxtaposed with vast low-income areas.
The sharp line dividing rich and poor is a normal characteristic for Nairobi. The largest slum is called Kibera where houses are made from a mixture of mud, sticks, and tin. The first picture illustrates how a passenger train barrels through the slum twice a day, less than a meter away from people’s homes. Next door, people play golf at the Royal Nairobi Golf Club. In the second image, the photographer took a picture of the suburb of Loresho which is home to both the wealthy and the poor.
Which of these areas impressed you the most? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!