From the series Permanent Error
Aissah Salifu, Agbogbloshie Market, Accra, Ghana, 2010
© Pieter Hugo, Courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery, New York and Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town
Pieter Hugo’s new series, Permanent Error, depicts Agbogbloshie, a massive dump site for technological waste on the outskirts of Ghana’s capital city, and the locals who burn down the components to extract bits of copper, brass, aluminum and zinc for resale. Tons of outdated and broken computers, computer games, mobile phones and other e-waste are shipped to the area as “donations” from the West, under the guise of providing technology to developing countries. Rather than helping to bridge the digital divide, the equipment is transformed into noxious trash threatening the health of the area’s inhabitants and contaminating the water and soil.