Participants sought for project documenting the stories of breast cancer survivors and others affected by the disease

By Wendy S. Loughlin

October 24, 2017

Newhouse School faculty member Tula Goenka is seeking participants for her project “Look Now: Facing Breast Cancer.”

The project focuses on breast cancer survivors through a series of clothed and unclothed portraits and an accompanying documentary with the goal of breaking down the barrier between survivors’ public personas and their private struggles with the disease. 

This is a photo of Tula Goenka
Tula Goenka

Goenka, herself a survivor, was the first person photographed for the project when it was launched in 2010. She is now relaunching it as a photo exhibition, interactive documentary and website. The multimedia version of the project will focus on survivors’ personal stories and will be enhanced with responsive text, statistics and graphics. Cindy Bell, who is also a breast cancer survivor, will be the photographer for the project.

Goenka hopes to address the human rights aspect of access to health care, and how differences in income, race, ethnicity and geographic location can impact diagnosis, treatment and survival. She is hoping for broad participation in the project, and is making a special effort to include inner-city residents on the South and Near Westside, New Americans on the North Side, people from rural Onondaga County and indigenous Native American populations, among others.

Goenka is also working with Syracuse Stage Associate Artistic Director Kyle Bass, who is also an adjunct in playwriting in the College of Visual and Performing Arts, to stage an original spoken word performance titled “Tit Bits.” It will include the stories of various individuals who have been touched by breast cancer: patient, survivor, surviving family member, friend, caregiver, medical practitioner and/or researcher.

Goenka is the Newhouse Endowed Chair of Public Communications.

For more information or to participate, visit the “Look Now” website at looknowproject.org. Goenka may be reached at (315) 443-3376 or tgoenka@syr.edu

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