Saint Paul, Minnesota

Jeffrey A. Austin

Somebody said recently that the best thing a student could do was to get in some shows and publish a book; but nothing about becoming a human being, nothing about having important feelings or concepts of humanity. That's the sort of thing that is bad education. I'd say be a human being first and if you happen to wind up using photography, that's good for photography.

Since returning from Prague, Czech Republic in 1997 where he lived and studied photography at the Academy of Performing Arts, Film, TV and Photography (FAMU), Jeffrey Austin has specialized in documentary photography for numerous humanitarian organizations as well as portraiture and performing arts photography. Based in Minnesota, Jeffrey has traveled extensively around the world in areas such as Vietnam, Cuba, Albania, Kosovo, West Africa, Russia and China working both for clients and developing his personal projects.

His most recent large scale project involved working in central China documenting the Three Gorges Dam Project, the most powerful dam in the world. As well as documenting the dam construction, Jeffrey was photographing life in a number of historic villages along the Yangtze river, villages that will no longer exist after 2003 when the river is flooded. Funding for this project was provided by a grant from the Jerome Foundation. A selection of images are available for viewing on this site including a photo story and text by Austin for ARCHAEOLOGY magazine and a recent interview with Photo District News. This project was also a feature story on the ZUMA Press website.

Other recent projects include; Photographing relief efforts by American Refugee Committee International (ARC) and the U.N. High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kosovo/Macedonia. Jeffrey has also been documenting relief work in Sri Lanka, Balkans, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, West Africa, Thailand and Cambodia for various refugee relief organizations including; Action Against Hunger, Care International, International Rescue Committee and Red Cross. Jeffrey was most recently awarded "Humanitarian Photographer of the Year" by InterAction, a coalition of US-based non-profits working to promote human dignity and development in countries around the world, for his recent documentary work in Sri Lanka and Cambodia.

Jeffrey is represented by ZUMA Press and is available for photo assignments. He may be contacted directly through this site. All images are available for sale and are printed in limited editions. Please contact the photographer for prices and details.