Open Wound
Stanley GreeneTue 16 Mar 2004 - Sat 27 Mar 2004
'When you sit on a fence and watch genocide without doing anything about it, you are as guilty as those who are committing it.'



Over a period of 9 years, Stanley Greene visited Chechnya over 20 times, witnessing the destruction of a country and its people that the rest of the world could not even begin to or want to imagine. Open Wound's powerful images are an unforgettable legacy of his nine years there, and seals in history the truth of what happened to Chechnya and its people.
'When you sit on a fence and watch genocide without doing anything about it, you are as guilty as those who are committing it.'



Over a period of 9 years, Stanley Greene visited Chechnya over 20 times, witnessing the destruction of a country and its people that the rest of the world could not even begin to or want to imagine. Open Wound's powerful images are an unforgettable legacy of his nine years there, and seals in history the truth of what happened to Chechnya and its people.


The collapse of Russian communism in 1991 resounded to the shudder of an empire. Soviet imperialism and empiricism was dead and lands, nations and peoples would henceforth be free from the tyranny of the communist diktat. But it also sounded the death knell of a small, impoverished, forgotten land-locked state in the Caucasus which had the misfortune to be of geopolitical importance.



Chechnya reiterated its largely Muslim claim to independence from Russia, one they had first made 150 years before. Then, of course, they had no knowledge of the importance of oil; they were peasants hurling clods against the cavalry of Imperialist Russia. They do now. A blitzkrieg was launched against the Chechens in 1994, so devastating as to reduce Grozny, the capital, to a city of rubble and rats, the Dresden of the Caucasus. There followed the systematic rape and murder of the people, men, women and children, by the Spetznatz, the Russian special forces.



Stanley Greene visited Chechnya over 20 times from 1994-2003, witnessing the demise of Grozny and the resisitance of its people respectively. Open Wound is a testament to the people of Chechnya, and an important voice to their plight. The rest of the world cannot ignore this when faced with Stanley Greene's photographs.



Open Wound (2003) is published by Trolley.
Artworks will be added shortly