“The terrible impact of war affects countries long after peace treaties are signed. The economic, psychological, environmental and physical scars can last for decades, even affecting the generations born after the conflict.”
What happens to countries and their people once a war is over? It’s a question that has been on my mind since I started photographing humanitarian and conflict issues more than a decade ago. Can we even say that wars are over if people are still dying and lives are still disrupted decades after peace treaties are signed?
Legacy of War is a photographic project by the photographer Giles Duley exploring the long-term effects of conflict globally. Most specifically, Legacy of War documents the lasting impact of war on individuals and communities told through the stories of those living in its aftermath.
With the mainstream media firmly focussed on the short-term economic and political consequences of conflict, LoW is concerned with the human and the personal. It explores the local landscapes and everyday lives of those affected by conflict – often decades after peace treaties have been signed – and raises issues that are often neglected by mainstream news and history.
Giles Duley: Bio
Duley is a documentary photographer and writer, born in 1971 in London. His work focuses on the long-term humanitarian impact of conflict.
Starting his carer as a music photographer, Duley worked with the likes of Mariah Carey, Oasis and Lenny Kravitz for publications including Q, Vogue, Sunday Times and Elle. In 2000 his image of Marilyn Manson was voted amongst the 100 greatest rock photographs of all time.
In 2004 Duley changed his focus to documentary work, partnering with well-respected charities such as HI (Humanity and Inclusion), EMERGENCY, Save the Children and UNHCR to highlight lesser-known stories deserving of public attention and action. Although documenting challenging, and at times, horrific situations, Giles captures the strength of those who fight adversity rather than succumb. His photographs draw the viewer to the subject, creating intimacy and empathy for lives differing from ours only in circumstance.
His work has taken him to Iraq, Afghanistan, South Sudan, DR Congo, Angola, Bangladesh, Kenya, Ukraine, Jordan, Lebanon, Colombia, Vietnam and Nigeria among others.
In 2015 he started his Legacy of War project, which looks to explore common themes of conflict. A core part of the project is collaborations with other artists and writers to reach a wider audience. These collaborations have included the musicians Massive Attack and PJ Harvey.
In 2011, whilst working in Afghanistan, Duley was severely injured by an IED. As a result of his injuries he is a triple-amputee. In 2012 he returned to Afghanistan to continue his work as a photographer.
Duley is also CEO and Founder of the NGO Legacy of War Foundation and is a campaigner for the rights of both refugees and those living with disability caused by conflict.
His work has been exhibited and published worldwide.
In 2019 he was awarded the prestigious Amnesty Media Award for Photojournalism.