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LightBox on Tumblr is a window into the lens of LightBox, a blog by TIME’s photo department that explores how photography, video and the culture of images define today’s world.

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Photograph by Pieter Hugo

Pieter Hugo’s There’s a Place in Hell for Me & My Friends is a series of portraiture of the artist and his peers who reside in South Africa.

Through a digital process of converting colour images to black and white while manipulating the colour channels, Hugo emphasizes the pigment (melanin) in his sitters’ skins so they appear heavily marked by blemishes and sun damage. The resulting portraits are the antithesis of the airbrushed images that determine the canons of beauty in popular culture, and expose the contradictions of racial distinctions based on skin colour.

A book of the work is being published by oodee, for more information visit their website here. 

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