MIMI CHAKAROVA

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MIMI CHAKAROVA CAME TO THE UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA A FATEFUL TUESDAY NIGHT. I HAD SEEN HER NAME ON THE SEX TRAFFICKING SYMPOSIUM POSTER AND WENT TO THE UNION SCHOLAR’S ROOM WHERE IT SAID SHE WOULD BE. AFTER WAITING THIRTY MINUTES IN THE MUSTY, PHOTOGRAPH-JOURNALIST-LESS ROOM WITH A GROUP OF SIX PEOPLE, I EVENTUALLY LEFT. BUT I WENT ONTO HER WEBSITE AND FELL IN LOVE WITH HER ART. CHAKAROVA DEPICTS “THE PRICE OF SEX” WITH PHOTOS OF EX-SEX MOLDOVAN SEX SLAVES IN THEIR HOME AND REVEALS THE INJUSTICES OF KASHMIR WITH DRAMATIC PHOTOS OF INHABITANTS’ HARSH LIFE IN THE PROVINCE. CHAKAROVA ENTICED ME WITH HER STRIKING PHOTOS AND VIDEOS, PROBING ME TO FURTHER LOOK INTO MORE OF HER WORK. SHE DID A PIECE FOR VICE (BELOW), AND DESCRIBED HER ENCOUNTER WITH SEX TRAFFICKING THE MISSING WOMEN OF HER HOME COUNTRY, BULGARIA, AND HER DANGEROUS EXPERIMENT IN TURKEY. CHAKAROVA, IN HER SEARCH TO SEE AND EXPERIENCE WHAT SEX SLAVES ENDURED, POSED AS A PROSTITUTE IN A TURKISH BROTHEL. HER INABILITY TO BRING ANY KIND OF CAMERA INTO THE BROTHEL LEFT MIMI WITHOUT HER MAIN ARTISTIC MEDIUM BUT HER WATERCOLOUR VIDEO AND DARK NARRATIVE MAKE UP FOR THE LACK OF PHOTOS. CHAKAROVA’S ATTEMPT TO CHANGE THE SOCIETAL STIGMA FOR EX-PROSTITUTES AND SEX SLAVES IN THE BALKANS AND THROUGHOUT THE WORLD IS VERY PERSUASIVE, AND HER ART BOLDLY SERVES AS A TANGIBLE REPRESENTATION OF THE NECESSARY MOVEMENT TO END SEX SLAVERY. I’M ALMOST CERTAIN I SAW HER THE FOLLOWING DAY, HER BRIGHT RED HAIR EXPOSING HER FROM A MILE AWAY.
 
HTTP://WWW.VICE.COM/VIDEO/I-POSED-AS-A-PROSTITUTE-IN-A-TURKISH-BROTHEL
HTTP://WWW.MCLIGHT.COM
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