Thursday 18 January 2018

A Lens On Syria is an exhibition by award-winning Russian documentary photographer Sergey Ponomarev, featuring more than 60 unforgettable colour photographs from two recent bodies of work. 

Ponomarev was one of very few photographers allowed access to the Government-controlled areas of Syria in 2013-2014. Assad’s Syria offers a rare insight into what life was really like for people living there.

The Exodus captures the determination, endurance and suffering of people from Syria and elsewhere, who sought asylum and a better life in Europe in photographs taken by Ponomarev at the height of the European refugee crisis for the New York Times between 2015 and 2016.

Sergey Ponomarev: A Lens on Syria forms part of IWM's Syria: A Conflict Explored, a season of exhibitions and events reflecting upon the ongoing conflict in Syria.  

Homeless children play in the ruins of Homs after Opposition forces left the area.
© Sergey Ponomarev for the New York Times

Homs, Syria, 14 June 2014

Homeless children play in the ruins of Homs after Opposition forces left the area.  During the siege, children were left to fend for themselves when their parents went missing or were caught on the wrong side of newly established checkpoints. 

A cyclist watches a fire caused by the explosion of a mortar shell
© Sergey Ponomarev

Damascus, Syria, 24 August 2013 

A cyclist watches a fire caused by the explosion of a mortar shell during fighting between Government and Opposition forces near the Old City of Damascus.

An election campaign poster for President Bashar al-Assad displayed on a ruined shopping mall in the Khalidiya district of Homs
© Sergey Ponomarev for the New York Times

Homs, Syria, 15 June 2014

An election campaign poster for President Bashar al-Assad displayed on a ruined shopping mall in the Khalidiya district of Homs, shortly after Government forces regained control of the area.  Built just before the war, the mall had never opened for business.

Abu Hisham Abdel Karim and his family use a local taxi to salvage possessions from their ruined apartment in the Khalidiya district of Homs.
© Sergey Ponomarev for the New York Times

Homs, Syria, 15 June 2014 

Abu Hisham Abdel Karim and his family use a local taxi to salvage possessions from their ruined apartment in the Khalidiya district of Homs.

This image from The Exodus shows an inflatable dinghy, crowded with refugees and migrants, as it is pulled ashore on the island of Lesbos.
© Sergey Ponomarev for the New York Times

Lesbos, Greece, 27 July 2015

This image from The Exodus shows an inflatable dinghy, crowded with refugees and migrants, as it is pulled ashore on the island of Lesbos after sailing five miles across the Aegean from Turkey.

Related Content

Imad Alarnab of Imad's Syrian Kitchen
Syria
How Imad left Syria and started again in London
Imad Alarnab is a Syrian restaurateur who left Damascus as a refugee in July 2015. He travelled to the UK through Turkey, Greece, Macedonia, Serbia, Hungary, Austria, Germany and France. He has been living in London for the last two years and has recently started a pop-up café called Imad’s Syrian Kitchen. 
Syria: a conflict explored
Syria
Syria FAQs
Discover the answers to frequently asked questions about the events in Syria.
A cyclist watches a fire caused by the explosion of a mortar shell
© Sergey Ponomarev
Contemporary conflict
Reporting from Syria
Pulitzer-prize winning photographer Sergey Ponomarev has covered subjects ranging from daily life in his homeland of Russia to conflicts including the Libyan civil war and combat in Afghanistan.