Smita Sharma: Life In New York's Chinatown


Smita Sharma: Life In New York's Chinatown

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Photographic Print, 2013

Resilience means not giving up hope in the worst of any situation. Once we lose hope everything changes and slides downwards. I have been very fortunate to meet many resilient women and men from various parts of world who have undergone some very horrifying experience. They never gave up and fought in the worse situations while accepting the reality. Such people are true warriors.

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Smita Sharma is an independent photojournalist based in Delhi and Kolkata. Her work primarily focusses on gender, health, social and human rights issues.

Her work has been published in various international publications including The Washington Post, The New York Times, BBC World,  TIME Lightbox, The Globe and Mail, Spiegel, Channel 4, Caravan Magazine, Newsweek, Human Rights Watch among others. Her work has been screened and exhibited in various countries including USA, India, Cambodia, Myanmar, South Korea, France, UK and Saudi Arabia.

Her long term project Not My Shame on sexual violence and rape in India was shown during CSW-59 and CSW-61 (Commission on the Status of Women) at the UN Headquarters in New York.

She is the recipient of The Washington Post Award at the Eddie Adams Workshop in 2013, National Silver and PVCHR Bronze medal for Protection of Human Rights at Rex Conclave, Delhi in 2015.  She was given Indian Of The Year award in 2017,  for her contribution in the field of journalism by Brands Academy, Delhi. In 2018, she was given Exceptional Women of Excellence award by Women Economic Forum, Delhi.

In 2016, Smita organised a bicycle campaign along with non-profit PVCHR in Varanasi and donated bicycles to abuse survivors who were assaulted on their commute to school. The campaign was a way to de-stigmatise and reintegrate the girls in their communities and help them to continue their education.

Since 2016, Smita has been working on a project on human trafficking in South Asia where she is documenting the flesh trade, domestic servitude, bride trafficking and how it operates in the region.

Smita graduated in photojournalism and documentary photography from the International Center of Photography, New York in 2013 and has a post graduate diploma in Journalism from University of Pune. Born and raised in Shillong, India, she has lived and travelled for work in South Asia, Africa, Latin America and USA.