PHOTOGRAPHY – ‘Jimmy Shoe’: Lamma Island’s Beach Trash Curios

Irish-born photographer Grainne Quinlan has spent the last few months scouring the Lamma shoreline for old footwear.

Presenting each shoe in a studio ‘light box’, the shots are reminiscent of fashion photography. However, her series highlights a much less glamorous cause – Hong Kong’s never-ending environmental battle against trash and waste.

Quinlan, who has been working at The Salt Yard since the summer, says that “these curios littering the beaches are due in part to the busy water ways of Hong Kong. Each month thousands of sea going vessels arrive and depart, churning debris, shrapnel and human remnants as they travel.”

Although there are often clean up efforts led by volunteers, trash usually returns to our coasts within days. This is particularly the case after bad weather or a typhoon.

Each example is mysterious as it is unknown from how far afield it came or who once owned it. Often, the size and brand are the only clues.

See more of Quinlan’s work on her portfolio.

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See also: Quinlan’s series on Hong Kong’s elderly Tai Chi enthusiasts, or her stunning portraits of the city’s domestic helper community.

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