TOKYO-2020 Book / Documentary

Unperson - Portraits of North Korean Defectors

  • Prize
    Gold in Book/Documentary
  • Photographer
    Tim Franco
  • Technical Info
    Portraits Shot In Large Format Polaroid Negative Reclamation / Landscapes In Medium Format Analog
  • Photo Date
    2017 - 2020

In George Orwell’s 1984, an unperson is someone who has been vaporized, whose record has been erased. Similarly, the North Korean defectors that Tim Franco chose to portray have decided to disappear, fleeing sometimes for ideological reasons and often out of despair. The road to South Korea is dangerous and can take years, across the many different border. The travels of the ones that do are filled with the fear of being arrested and sent back to labor camps. Having arrived in South Korea, they often struggle to find a new identity; Lost between their North Korean past and South Korean future.