Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Remi's work in the New Yorker

©Remi Benali

I am thrilled to let you all know that one of Remi's photographs will be in the January 9th edition of The New Yorker. The photograph illustrates "Reversal of Fortune," an article by Patrick Radden Keefe concerning the lengthy struggle of the Ecuadorian people to hold Chevron financially responsible for the pollution created during the company's twenty-year drilling process (under Texaco at the time) in the country. It is quite simply, the largest environmental suit ever and a case of David versus Goliath if ever there was one. Those of you that read the New Yorker will know that the use of photography in the magazine is fairly recent and remains rare so we are doubly pleased that Remi's photograph was chosen for an issue that is dear to our hearts. 

Remi first captured the story while on assignment for Vanity Fair magazine. His photographs accompanied the article "Jungle Law" by William Langewiesche in 2007. Remi's experience while shooting in the midst of the Ecuadorian rain forest was both challenging and striking as he captured some of the 900 oil waste pits left behind as well as portraying those suffering from cancer (the risk of death by the disease is up to thirty times in the region than elsewhere). For further of his photographs on the subject, please see his website but again, as these photographs are copyrighted, I ask that they not be borrowed or pinned.

©Remi Benali

UPDATE: Today, in a surprising turn of events, the Ecuadorian appeals court has upheld its condemnation of Chevron, holding them accountable for $8.6 Billion in damages. Additionally, if the company does not publicly apologize to the Ecuadorian public, the fine will be doubled to nearly $18 Billion. 


  1. Félicitations Remi! This is quite an achievement. The Ecuadorian people have been fighting a just but desperate cause, and against all odds, justice has just sided with them. This might help alleviate the suffering of many, and there is no doubt that photos captured by Remi and other photographers have helped bring attention to the Ecuadorian people's plight. So, once again, félicitations, Rémi. Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

  2. Wow! The New Yorker is such a reference. Thank goodness there are journalists and photographers out there willing to take risks to show the world the bad things that happen.
    I'm going over to check out his website

  3. Congratulations to Remi, and I agree, Heather, this is especially wonderful because the article covers such an important topic.

  4. Merci Vero, je suis completement d'accord avec toi, comme d'hab. And I will pass on your felicitations...

    Sharon, I think what I am most proud of are the articles that I have written that take a stand and I know that Remi feels the same about his photography!

    Judith, I thought that you would appreciate this. Bisous.

  5. Hi Heather.

    Please convey my congratulations to Remi. This is a prestigious honour to be featured in the New Yorker. Wishing you both continued success

    Helen xx

  6. 8.6 billion...that puts the damage done on a scale beyond imagining....

    It seems to me that the rainforests of the world are the lungs of the planet, yet still we plunder them, to deal with the issues tomorrow, Scarlet O'Hara style.

    Congratulations to Remi for making a difference. When he sits in his rocking chair at the twilight of his life, he can rock backwards and forwards, reflecting, knowing that he made a difference in making people think. And thinking is the start of change.

    Shall go and read the article now. . Virginia xx

  7. Chevron should pay dearly, I can’t image going into someone else’s home and leaving such a dangerous mess. I can’t believe what Remi caught behind that little girl for whom I pray has the chance to grow up without becoming ill.

    Congratulations to Remi and his continued success. I can’t wait to see my issue of the New Yorker.

    Hugs! Debra

  8. Wow, first Nat Geo and now the New Yorker?! Congratulations, Remi!!! And whoa that is some coincidence that the judgment came in today too. Let's hope it gets executed fairly. Congratulations again, you both must be so proud!

  9. This is such wonderful news for several reasons. Remi has captured a devastating event in a compelling way that will hopefully move people to connect to the human suffering occurring in Ecuador.
    You both should be very proud.


  10. Wow, such an impressive achievement. How proud you must be. His images are clearly a compelling party of the story, and bringing home the extent of the damage in with a weight that words alone can't convey. Congratulations to you both!

  11. Wow - congratulations, Remi!! A wonderful picture for a wonderful cause with a happy resolution - hooray! So proud of my sister and my not-really-but-pretty-much brother-in-law! : )

  12. Hello everyone! Remi is very touched by your support and your sensibility towards environmental issues. As always, moi aussi.

  13. Hi Heather,
    very pleased for Remi! Congratulation! I know that The New Yorker is a very good magazine which I would love to read regularly, unfortunately cannot get it here.

    Yes, I heard as well yesterday in the News about Chevron. But I also heard that they did not accepted the Equador verdict and that the company will bring the case to an American court which means that it will probably take years until a final settlement or agreement or any payment to these poor people. A mess! But I'll keep up my hope for a better world!


  14. Running out for a copy now!!!!!!!!GREAT magazine.No wonder they picked a GREAT photographer..............HOW EXCITING!

  15. It is true Karin but it is a real step forward nonetheless. Hopefully, eventually, Chevron will concede...

    Yay! I so understand as I am thiiis close to ordering a subscription myself. The New Yorker was such a huge influence on me while a young adult in Manhattan. I learned so much from reading it every week!

  16. The New Yorker was sitting right beside me. Quite an achievement to have a page and 2/3rds! And for a good cause.

  17. what a tragic story.
    beautiful photo indeed

  18. Such a horrid story, but what an amazing update! It must have been such a moving experience for Remi to be there & capture.

    ~ Clare x


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