e recycling


Ghana’s Tech Dump by Carl de Keyzer / 2016

“Photographs of burning rubble, sick cattle and unwell workers overshadow – or omit completely – a story of education around recycling and problem solving to improve the situation… A whole economy, a small town almost, has sprung up around it; there are food vendors, a mosque and a fashion store, for example. Many people argue that the dump provides necessary income for people who would otherwise have no means of earning money and say that, instead of being shut down, Agbogbloshie should become a prototype for responsible recycling. To this end, a number of NGOs and government offices have joined forces to open a training center at the dump, which aims to educate workers about environmental hazards. In addition, safer and more environmentally friendly equipment has been donated to enable workers to break down e-waste for recycling purposes without damaging their health.

The idea that Agbogbloshie is wasteland of pollution – the story often told in the press, illustrated the smoldering piles of out-of-date technological products and animals and people surrounded by dirt – is sensationalist and reductive, according to the organizations working there. A spokesperson for Pure Earth’s explains: “Our team on the ground in Agbogbloshie tells us that the recyclers are weary of all the attention they are receiving. It is, after all, their livelihood that is being scrutinized, and they do this dangerous work because they lack job options. The problem of e-waste is a complex one that cannot be solved overnight.

Magnum Photos


Last week I contacted a recycling company if they could help me out, with letting me search through their “E-Waste” for some old screens. They were very supportive and we could arrange an appointment. Today we visited their HQ and they showed us a whole truck full of stuff to dig through. I found 6 nice old 4:3 TFT screens and on top of that, the find of the day was a  Compaq 151FS from 1992. Really didn’t expect to find such a nice old CRT in that truck.


LDN EI, Antony Cairns (2015)

The latest book instalment of the LDN series by Antony Cairns has taken the term Digital Photobook to new extremes. Using recycled old e-book tablets, Cairns has hacked into the software of the computer within the tablet and made it possible to view the entire archive of imagery he has created for his London by night work. You can do this through selecting a chapter / title on the main contents page that you are confronted with when unlocking the E-ink tablet from its LDN EI cover page screensaver. As you flick thru page by page each image is composed by the shifting pixels of the Electronic Ink screen. Not only has the software of the E-reader been hacked but also the hardware has taken a significant bruising and remodelling, each book has been customised with a new back attached and unwanted parts like the keyboard covered and deemed redundant for the purpose.

via Martin Brink