Look Closer is a photo series by OZY that encourages readers to see beyond a seemingly normal photo. Hover over the circles to explore the photo more deeply.
Ash was flung into the sky, shooting 15 kilometers high before raining down and killing scores of livestock and crops on the Philippine island near the capital city of Manila.
Scientists worry that the lull since the eruption has caused many of the island’s 6,000 residents to return, placing themselves back in danger should a re-eruption occur in the coming weeks.
Tens of thousands were evacuated as the thick layer of ash and lightning carpeted the surrounding towns. The sparks were a particularly shocking phenomenon: In order to get lightning during an eruption, there needs to be so much volcanic activity that a charge separation between two separate masses of ash can form.
The threat is not over though. Taal Volcano, which before this month last erupted in 1977, remains at threat Level 4, after some 450 volcanic earthquakes were reported in the region in a recent 24-hour period.
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It looks like the type of mixed media illustration you would find on Deviant Art — a phantasmagorical creation meant for teen fiction, not real life.
Yet that billowing smoke, descending to the earth with lightning strikes shooting from its snout, is real. In fact, this photo, taken in mid-January, is of a storm over the province of Batangas in the Philippines. Below, thousands fled as police shut down nearby Manila’s international airport. The culprit? The Taal Volcano, known by tourists for its beautiful backdrop, now suddenly an apocalyptic vision.
Tens of thousands have evacuated the island after lava and rock fragments were shot up to 15 kilometers high and ash was carried as far as Quezon City on the island of Luzon. While volcanic activity has stalled, scientists warn this may just be the beginning. The volcano remains at threat Level 4, the second-highest possible alert level in the Philippines, mostly because some 450 earthquakes were reported in the region in a recent 24-hour period. And officials worry that the lull is causing many of the island’s 6,000 residents to return, unaware of the potential danger they are placing themselves in should Taal erupt again.
Photography by Domcar C. Lagto/Pacific Press/Sipa/AP
LOOK CLOSER: MYTHOLOGICAL STUFF, OR AN APOCALYPTIC STORM?
Look Closer is a new photo series by OZY that encourages readers to see beyond a seemingly normal photo. Hover over the circles to explore the photo more deeply.
The idea for the quilt was hatched by activist Cleve Jones during the candlelight march in remembrance of the 1978 assassinations of San Francisco city supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone.
There were more than 44,000 individual panels in the quilt, weighing more than 10,000 pounds.
The first display of the quilt was in 1987, in Washington, D.C., and it was displayed again in 1996 to be visited by President Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton. It was shown again at the time of the XIX International AIDS Conference in 2012.
The quilt was often the only opportunity survivors had to remember and honor the lives of their loved ones. Many who died of AIDS-related illnesses didn’t have funerals because of the social stigma early on. In fact, some funeral homes and cemeteries even refused to accept the bodies of the deceased.
This could be Washingtonians standing beside a giant board game on the National Mall. But look beyond a glance and you’ll see that the spectators are gathered around the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt on a crisp October day in 1996. The expansive, colorful AIDS Memorial Quilt — with more than 44,000 panels weighing over 10,000 pounds — was designed to be an eye-catching tool for a national prevention campaign that portrayed the humanity behind the statistics. The idea for the project was hatched in 1985 by activist Cleve Jones and other volunteers during a candlelight march in remembrance of the 1978 assassinations of San Francisco city supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone.
In more ways than one, 1996 was an inflection point. It was the first year since the epidemic started that saw the AIDS incidence rate and deaths decline. In the same year, Time magazine Man of the Year was granted to AIDS researcher Dr. David Ho. The doctor was a pioneer in the use of drug “cocktails,” or combinations, to fight the virus. At the time, 23 million people worldwide were estimated to be living with HIV/AIDS, and more than 6 million people had already died.
“When the history of this era is written, it is likely that the men and women who turned the tide on AIDS will be seen as true heroes of the age,” Time wrote about Dr. Ho. By 2017, more than two decades later, nearly 37 million people had HIV/AIDS worldwide, according to UNAIDS.
Today, remembrance and commitment to LGBTQ rights are no less pressing. Pride Month, which commemorates the Stonewall riots of 1969 in Manhattan, is simultaneously a time for resistance and celebration. Among those both within and outside the LGBTQ community, this month evokes an intentional remembrance of decades of hard-fought progress that LGBTQ activists have made in demanding equal rights in American society. At the same time, it’s a reminder that democracy requires the active participation of all — and that the battle for equality is neither over nor won.
Photograph by Shayna Brennan/AP
Look Closer: Rugs, Giant Board Game, or Something Far More Poignant?
By Nick Fouriezos