Thursday, July 05, 2012

PHOTOESSAY: Paying for Babies in Nagorno-Karabakh. By Kerri MacDonald (

( When a couple marries in Nagorno-Karabakh, the government gives them a cash reward of $780. More money comes their way after the birth of their first child — and their second, third and fourth. Families with six children under the age of 18 receive a house.

This week’s Sunday Review features a series of powerful images by Anastasia Taylor-Lind, a member of the VII photo agency. Ms. Taylor-Lind, who is based in London, documented the “birth encouragement program” in Nagorno-Karabakh. The disputed region in the southern Caucasus fell into conflict in 1988 which escalated shortly before the Soviet Union collapsed and ethnic Armenians went to war with Azerbaijan. The goal of the program is to repopulate the country, where tens of thousands have been displaced.

The photos — women in their late teens and early 20s with their babies and young children — are from Ms. Taylor-Lind’s project the “National Womb.” They appeared online on Saturday.(slideshow here)

Much of Ms. Taylor-Lind’s work is focused on women and women’s issues — from “Women of the Cossack Resurgence” to “No Friends But the Mountains.” She worked on “The National Womb” as part of the 2011 Joop Swart Masterclass, which was based upon the theme Respect. She spoke about the project in a video for Canon Professional Network.


Anastasia Taylor-Lind is a member of the VII Photo agency. She is based in the Middle East where she works for clients such as GEO Germany and the Sunday Times Magazine. She has been exhibited internationally in such spaces as the Saatchi Gallery in London, the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam and Fovea Exhibitions in New York. She has received a number of photography awards from the likes of The Guardian, Deutsche Bank and Canon Italy, as well as being a 2011 FNAC Grant winner. She studied at the University of Wales Newport and the London College of Communications.

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