Picture Show: Skateistan
Those of us in the Western world probably imagine of Afghanistan more in terms of soldiers and bombs than skaters bombing hills. Last summer, however, Noah Abrams learned about the country's emerging skateboarding scene, and the photographer immediately jetted to the war-torn nation to find a small but thriving culture—where children who have seen some of life's most brutal realities can still find fun on four wheels and a plank of wood.
"Skateboarding has been a part of my life since I was a kid," says Abrams, "and did a great to deal to help shape my personality and the way I view the world. So the idea of getting to spend some time with these kids and show them that by choosing to skate, they are part of something much larger than what is immediately around them was very important for me. In addition, the opportunity to have that kind of cross cultural connection and dialogue was just too intriguing to pass up."
Prior to going, Abrams did some research to put his family at ease about what danger he might encounter, but beyond that, he made a concerted effort to leave his preconceptions behind. What he found was nothing short of incredible.
"The smiles and genuine excitement the kids had for skateboarding were quite simply one of the most pure expressions of joy I have ever had the privilege to witness," he says. "To see that kind of happiness exist in a place that has seen such hard times, for me, was really humbling. I can really only speak from the time I spent in country, but in my experience, life there certainly isn't easy. However, spending time there was a great reminder that although culturally we may be very different, at the end of the day our goals as people are pretty much the same. We all want to be happy, and no one wants to suffer."
What follows is a selection from Noah Abrams's "Skateistan."
Thanks To AR Technology, Super Bowl Fans Can View Their Seats Before Buying It won’t make tickets any cheaper, but it will help buyers consider their purchase in a completely new way.
Hockey Teams Face-Off In An Empty Arena Due To Severe Weather Things get a little weird when there’s not a single fan in sight.
Lindsey Vonn Hits The Slopes in A Captain America Speed Suit The Olympic skier said she will represent the American people, not Trump.
Gay Olympian Adam Rippon Slams Inclusion Of Mike Pence On U.S. Delegation “I wouldn’t go out of my way to meet somebody like that.”
Team’s ‘Practice’ For Soccer Goalies Involves Flaming Obstacles, Mud, And Jumping Out Of Trains The workout looks like it was inspired by a drill sergeant's fever dream.
Hockey Fans React To Kid Rock’s Upcoming Performance At The NHL All-Star Game Why would the league ask the intolerant musician to play during ‘Hockey is for Everyone’ month?