NIGERIA, Gwagwalada, April 2018.
Twins play with a mirror. Favour mirroring Favourite.
We photographed with a conceptual approach in mind; for example playing with the idea of twins being eachothers reflection or shadow and anticipating situations in reality that could serve these ideas.
We documented Favour and Favourite playing with this mirror on the orphanage's playground; one of them holding up the mirror for her identical twin sister spinning (her skirt) around while looking at her own reflection.
The Vine Heritage Home Foundation is an orphanage situated in Gwagwalada, one hour drive from the Federal Capital, Abuja. It was founded by Olusola Stevens and his wife an affiliate of Christian Missionary foundation. The two missionaries created a shelter for children whose life was endangered by the infanticide practices performed by the neighbouring Bassa communities.
If a mother dies during child birth or while nursing a baby, the baby is considered evil and must therefore be buried (alive) with the deceased mother. Over 70% of the children currently living in Vine Heritage Home were rescued for this very reason. The belief that twins (multiple births) are an abomination makes them suffer a similar fate. Twins are killed shortly after birth; being left to starve, poisoned, or buried alive.
Twins and other children killing is illegal in Nigeria. The criminal code section 316 defines the conditions of the homicide. Yet, the government agents struggle to stop the practice.