Wakira’s Snakeskin Factory by Beawiharta

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Snakes are curious creatures, but human reaction to these reptiles is even more unexpected as our reactions can include fear, disgust, respect, as well as adoration. As a photographer for Reuters, Beawiharta deftly solicits this range of emotion through images that document the inner workings of a snakeskin factory in West and Central Java in Indonesia. The factory is owned by Wakira “Boss Cobra,” and processes meters upon meters of snakeskin for accessories – though the meat does not go to waste either. The photographs hypnotize, a mechanism of the snake’s beautifully patterned skin, as the snakes lie in coils and also hang as sheets on racks to tan in the sun. The transition in texture from the skin on the reptile to the covering of a handbag is salient and unexpected, as the light in the photographs is reflected off the leathery skin. Beawiharta reminds us that these snakes are beautiful from beginning to end, in a multitude of manifestations.

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Kimberly

Kimberly is a graduate from MIT's Department of Architecture, and has recently joined the publication team at MIT OpenCourseWare. While architecture remains her first love, her interests encompass literature – epic poetry and Medieval romances are her favorite – and also fashion.

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