Today I received the sad news that Alexandra Boulet had died. She suffered a brain aneurysm in June and fell into a coma, from which she never emerged. She was an amazing photographer, working to bring the stories of the underserved to light. At the most recent VII seminar in Pasadena, it was such an amazing experience listening to Alexandra speak about the experience of traveling for two months under the the veil of a burka among the women of Afghanistan as they were preparing to vote for the first time. You can see this work under the “Features” section of the VII site; it is part of a series she was working on called “Women of the Axis.” She told us she had put the burka on at the airport, and taken it off two months later, and how she came to understood their comfort some of the women felt with choosing to continue to wear it; she told us how felt ‘exposed’ when removing it to return to the western world. The work she did on that project was amazing; no one could have lived among the women and captured their spirit as Alex did.
Check out this link to her National Geographic image/audio piece “Diary of a War” that she shot from January to May 2003. Another amazing piece: click here to view a Time magazine multimedia piece on “Capturing Gaza’s Hell.”
Add to these links the recent VII seminar in London within which Alexandra is reported to have share this: “Alexandra Boulet revealed that her father, himself a photographer, had spent 10 years trying to dissuade her from taking up the profession. He had called it “a rotten piece of wood”. That was twenty years ago, and she has since gone on to cover the wars in Yugoslavia and Iraq, the fall of the Taliban and the condition of women in the Islamic world − winning numerous awards in the process.”
I encourage you to visit the VII site and see the warm tribute her colleagues have posted, as well as read the NYT obituary, from with you will learn that her parents gave her the gift of photography which she in turn gave to all of us.
Her work will live on but oh how we will miss her.