Anonymous – Unparalleled Suffering Photography, Lisa Shapiro Award Winner 2017
A tribute written for Anonymous – Unparalleled Suffering Photography, written by: Melanie Hiller, A Well Fed World
The activist behind Unparalleled Suffering Photography (UPSP) is a gifted artist who has chosen to use their significant talents to expose the diverse forms of animal exploitation and torment perpetrated and normalized by our culture. This activist, working anonymously and entirely on their own, expertly documents both the emotional terror and physical suffering that animals endure at human hands: from captive entertainment venues such as aquariums and rodeos, to the rapidly proliferating trend of backyard animal farming and DIY “humane” slaughter.
Without requesting any compensation, this activist has volunteered their work to numerous organizations and campaigns in order to bolster their messaging, including Fish Feel, United Poultry Concerns, the Save Movement, Free from Harm, Mothers Against Dairy, and Milk Hurts.
As someone who works for A Well-Fed World, I quickly saw a need for UPSP’s photography for our Humane Facts campaign, which is devoted to debunking “humane” animal farming and slaughter myths. While farm animal advocates are increasingly fortunate to have access to images of conditions on animal farms, the majority of these images come from large commercial farms where activists are able to sneak in undetected. Advocates do not have nearly this kind of access to images and footage from small, “humane” animal farming/slaughter operations, something we need a great deal more of as the popularity of humane meat, dairy and egg labels continue to surge. The activist behind Unparalleled Suffering Photography is committed to exposing the humane myth, but the nature of their undercover activism requires that they receive no personal acknowledgement for their powerful work, even with this award. As such, I believe they represent an unsung hero in every sense of the word.