Home / PhotographyHeartbreaking Side-by-Side Photos Juxtapose Western World with War-Torn Middle East

Heartbreaking Side-by-Side Photos Juxtapose Western World with War-Torn Middle East

Digital Photo Collages by Uğur Gallenkuş

Istanbul-based artist Uğur Gallenkuş creates digital photo collages as a way to encourage social change in our often volatile world. Last year, he began placing side-by-side photographs depicting the relative safety and luxury of Western culture with the war-torn Middle East. The differences are as striking as they are heartbreaking. In his ongoing series, the West is shown as a place of consumerism and excess while people in countries like Syria are facing grave destruction and ultimately fighting to stay alive.

Gallenkuş believes that art transcends all languages. We can look at one of his images—such as Holland’s colorful field of tulips juxtaposed with rows of guns in the Middle East—and instantly understand that while one population can appreciate nature’s beauty, the other fears extreme violence in their lives. These digital collages can be hard to view, but they achieve the overall goal of Gallenkuş’ work—to raise awareness and awaken us to the injustices taking place near and far.

For even more eye-opening collages, follow Gallenkuş on his popular Instagram account.

Istanbul-based artist Uğur Gallenkuş creates heart-breaking juxtapositions of Western culture and the war-torn Middle East.

Digital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur Gallenkuş

The ongoing series depicts how the West enjoys life’s luxuries while the other part of the world faces extreme violence and destruction.

Digital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur Gallenkuş

Each digital collage is a wakeup call, urging people to be aware of the duality of the world we all live in.

Digital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur GallenkuşDigital Photo Collages by Uğur Gallenkuş

In addition to still images, Gallenkuş has recently started experimenting with videos:

A post shared by ugurgallen (@ugurgallen) on

Uğur Gallenkuş: Instagram | Twitter

All images via Uğur Gallenkuş.

Related Articles:

Before-and-After Photos Reveal the Destructive Effects of the War in Syria

Syrian Refugee Children Find Comfort in Coping with Their Grief Through Art Therapy

WWII Refugees Send Heartwarming Letters of Hope to Syrian Children

Want to become a My Modern Met Member?

Find out how by becoming a Patron. Check out the exclusive rewards, here.

Sponsored Content