Dominique Catton is an international photographer and multimedia artist based in Yaounde. Her work includes freelance assignments as content creator and visual communications strategist with NGOs and UN agencies worldwide. She also teaches photography and video. She has exhibited in Europe, the United States and Cameroon, including at Salon 2016, Photofusion, London; RAVY 2016, Yaounde; Open 2015, Peckham Platform, London. Her images have also been published in Rolling Stone magazine, Inside Art Magazine and La Repubblica.

Thirteen Stolen Smiles is a story raising awareness of child marriage. Photographed in Eastern Cameroon in 2016, it looks at the experience of four young girls (Elisabeth, Mirabelle, Mariam and Delphine) married or promised for marriage at the age of 13.

In addition to its focus on an issue of social concern, the series blends portraiture with details of features or pieces of fabric, as if to create a proximity between the photographed young girls and the viewer. It also presents multiple interpretations of home from indoor spaces to desolate ruins left in the village, almost as a metaphor for a life’s journey poised between loss, of innocence, of one’s freedom, and the resilience of those teen mothers now carers of even younger lives.

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All images copyright © Dominique Catton.