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Luke Duggleby launches Guardians of the Areng

Date uploaded: December 10, 2014

Forestry Commission England has announced the opening of 'Guardians of the Areng Valley' an exhibition by photographer Luke Duggleby, recipient of the inaugural Forestry Commission England Exhibition Award. The exhibition is sited in Grizedale Forest a short walk along the Millwood Trail from the Visitor Centre and will be open daily from the 15th of November 2014 to the 1st of March 2015.

The award is part of the Atkins CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the Year 2014 and was selected by Forestry Commission England Director Ian Gambles.

This exhibition is the world premiere of a significant body of work by Duggleby. The photographs shown in the exhibition present Duggleby’s journey into the Cardamom Forest in Southwest Cambodia, somewhere he has returned many times as a photographer. They focus particular attention on a group of Buddhist monks pioneering a small but influential environmental movement aimed at reversing forest destruction to protect the indigenous peoples and endangered species of the remote Areng Valley.

England’s Public Forests provide a suitably inspiring location to present this exhibition and are the perfect setting in which to reflect on the wider global issues and concerns relating to our environment. The threat faced by woods and forests, to the people and species that inhabit them is a global one. They are places not only of special ecological value but of great cultural significance. However far too often they are perceived only as a resource or perhaps even a hurdle to overcome in the rapid development of land. Duggleby’s photographs are evidence of these opposing perspectives and the one-sided conflict in which the latter often prevails.

Duggleby has been a professional photographer working in Asia since 2004. Using Bangkok as his base he regularly travels the continent and further afield shooting assignments for some of the world’s most respected publications and NGOs as well as undertaking personal projects. His images have featured in many respected photography competitions and have been published by clients ranging from The Sunday Times, National Geographic, The Guardian, Greenpeace, Monocle and The New York Times.

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