Photographer:Fikret Dilek Yurdakul
Continent: Asia
Country: Turkey
Project Title: Plague Of The Century
Project Continent: Asia
Project Country: Turkey
Nominated By: Afshin Ismaeli
Seconded By: ,

Cancer is the plague of our century.
WHO figures reveal a stark truth – one in five of us confronts it.
Early diagnosis remains the best weapon in this fight, and my aim through this photo project is to stir a raw, unfiltered response – a disquiet that stirs action. I believe fear keeps people alive and forces them to take precautions.

I witnessed cancer exact immense mental and emotional toll, and a patient’s psychological state playing a huge role in their overcoming the disease. I also witnessed pain and hurt, but I also witnessed art providing comfort and healing the soul.

This project is in memory of all warrior women, but especially for Zeynep and Canan.

May they both rest in peace.

Most patients camouflage hair loss during chemotherapy by wearing wigs Zeynep kept hers with her even while sleeping for her 10-month-old daughter who cried whenever she saw her without hair

Both Canan and Zeynep mentioned that they first saw intense hair loss after chemotherapy in the shower like many patients Psychologically it is not easy for women to face this br

Some patients facing hair loss are brave enough to shave their hair themselves instead of waiting for them to fall out Canan was a woman who had that strength

One of the most motivating and life-affirming things for patients during intensive treatment at home and in the hospital is art Canan took music as medicine for her soul

During long chemotherapy sessions Zeynep was one of those patients who chose painting to heal their soul

Patients with extreme pain use morphine patches heavy painkillers Zeynep said numerous moments where she wanted to scream from pain but couldn t because of her 10-month-old baby

Patients who had metastasized had to be operated again at new metastasis sites Zeynep who developed liver metastases after breast cancer was placed in her bed after surgery

Moments when Canan s parents touched her for the first time after the surgery it was her 9th brain metastasis She fought got rid of it

The last minutes before the death of Zeyneb who had the 3rd metastasis in her brain While the family elder reads the Qur an at her bedside her uncle checks her pulse in one of the moments he thought she was dead The most painful moments for her family

Zeynep started painting the Whirling Dervish during chemotherapy but couldn t complete it Her family and friends hung it on the wall for morale Zeynep died and her painting remained unfinished