Igen Sulphur Mines
In 2012, Shamil travelled to Java, Indonesia to photograph miners working in the Kawah Ijen crater. Located over 9000 ft above sea level, before sunrise, the miners embark on gruelling 3km hike to Ijen Sulphur Mines, a 1km wide turquoise coloured acid lake. After a few hours of mining for sulphur they begin the journey back to base, carrying up to 90kg of hardened sulphur in primitive hand made bamboo baskets. They do this several times per day and are paid up to $3 per trip.
Shamil spent 2 days with the miners, documenting the hardships and conditions of such a physically demanding job.
“They are some of the most hardcore people I’ve ever met! The guys work in one of the most poisonous environments on the planet with little or no safety equipment. The altitude and weight of sulphur is mind-blowing... I could barely lift it! It was very humbling to spend time and get to know the guys that do this. It certainly makes you stop complaining about carrying lighting!”- Shamil Tanna