What’s Your Most Prized Possession?

Today, I stumbled across a project completed by Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti. He travelled the world for 18 months and photographed children with their most prized possessions/toys. He then composed an album that highlighted the blatant contrast of living conditions around the world. Here are few of what I found to be some of the most striking photos.

Chiwa-Mwafulirwa-Malawi-1024x1024 Noel-South-Dallas-Texas-1024x1024 ‘ Jaqueline-Amelie-J.Rivera-Manila-philippines-01-1024x1024Norden-Rrahke-Marocco-1024x1024

Here is a link to his album: http://www.gabrielegalimberti.com/projects/toys-2/

By viewing these pictures, it is easy to notice that they portray a striking inequality of income between children photographed from different parts of the world. Some pictures featured children surrounded by mountains of toys in beautifully decorated rooms, while others proudly displayed their favourite worn out dinosaur or race car in makeshift tents or crummy rooms.

However, if you were to take a second thorough look at the pictures, you will be able to find more similarities than differences. The subject of the project seemed to unite all kids of different backgrounds as they all were given the chance to display their favourite toys or possessions. All the children featured throughout the album, regardless of the expenses or simplicity of their possessions  enjoyed the same feeling of joy and happiness as they spent a few minutes a day playing with these toys.

In fact, when Galimberti was asked about his project, he spoke of a girl in Malawi and a boy in Texas, who both used their dinosaurs to protect them from “danger”. Similarly, he stated that  all children’s choices in toys were influenced by their parent’s professions or surrounding environments.

Do similarities matter?

YES, instead of drawing a distinction between children around the world, we should attempt to link them through their similarities. Maybe once the world is viewed more as “one”,  more compassion for those suffering would be created. It is important to remember that children are usually the biggest victims of conflict while being only innocent bystanders. They do not instigate conflict, do not plan military coups, and do not hide nuclear weapons. However, they usually end up paying the price for the action of the “adults” of the world.

Next time you see a child suffering from the side effects to war, conflict, hunger etc. do not remove yourself from the situation or consider them to be “different” than you or your children. Just remember what Galimberti said “Children are all the same, they just want to play”.

It was just brought to my attention that another awesome blogger has previously covered this topic. So I thought I would link her so you guys can take a look at her great blogpost as well! Click here to check it out. 

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8 thoughts on “What’s Your Most Prized Possession?

  1. Wow, this is really interesting Rasha!

    Sorry, this is totally unrelated, but I find it interesting that the two children with the most toys are both white… Not sure if you just happened to choose those two by chance or if the photographer intentionally played on this stereotype.

  2. Great point on drawing comparison, especially when discussing the young. As you said, due to the actions of our adults, it is the children that often find themselves facing the short end of the stick. It is essential for these type of similarities to continue to exist so that our generation and the generations ahead of us can have a different outlook on society and how to treat one another.

  3. Iman Arab says:

    This is a very hard topic to approach,well done. As I was reading this, I kept wondering what the results would be if the study was conducted here in Canada.

    • I would really love to see this study/survey/work of art be conducted in Canada. I think it would provide great and maybe shocking insight into the lives of Canadian children.

  4. I love this project and post! 🙂 I really like that you decided to focus on similarities instead of differences. I think a natural reaction for me, and maybe many others, would be to point to the harsh differences and discuss how a culture of consumerism affects the young. I think your point of view introduces a more positive and productive discussion.

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