by Joshua Irwandi
About the project
VIRAL started as a photography project about the heroism of doctors and nurses fighting the COVID-19 pandemic in Indonesia, but soon unfolded itself around this one iconic photograph.
Too often images serve as an illustration in a journalistic publication, it seldom happens that one image carries a whole narrative by itself and defines the human tragedy of what dominates world-news (the global COVID-pandemic).
“Sometimes, reality is something very difficult to deal with”
More about the project
Photographer Joshua Irwandi recounts the making and impact of his image ‘Viral’.
About the photographer
After having received education in Canada and the United Kingdom, right after graduation in 2015 Irwandi spent a year as museum staff at the Asmat Museum of Culture and Progress in Agats, West Papua.
Irwandi has a MA in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography from the University of Arts in London and a BA in English literature.
Joshua Irwandi received a Talent Grant to produce his project VIRAL and shows the result at BredaPhoto 2020
Joshua Irwandi's iconic representation of the COVID-19 pandemic with his VIRAL image was directly awarded in 2021.
‘The human cost of COVID-19’ won the prize in the General News Singles Category. Once published Irwandi came under scrutiny from the Indonesian government and COVID-19 deniers.
Irwandi is one of ten selected photographers for the VII Photo Agency Mentorship.
What Forhanna did
type of support: Finance & Production grant
Forhanna initiated and supported the first exhibition of Irwandi’s work at BredaPhoto that showcased the iconic, widely shared, and discussed photograph of the corona pandemic to challenge the viewer to be engaged in the strong emotions that this image provokes and to be part of the discussion.
Geert van Kesteren made an exclusive interview and video with Joshua Irwandi in which he reacts to his controversial and much-discussed image. The video was presented at BredaPhoto and provides content and background information to the VIRAL project.