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Photographer Amos Chapple was travelling through Uzbekistan this summer when the ban on photography in the Tashkent metro was lifted. Inspired by the opportunity to capture something most people had not previously been allowed to see, he took to the underground to reveal the art and architecture of Central Asia’s first subway.
On 1 June 2018, photography within Tashkent’s underground station was legalised, unveiling to the world an array of unique art and design for the first time in 41 years. Travelling in the country at the time, Kiwi photographer Amos Chapple jumped on the opportunity to share a slice of culture that was once hidden away.
Photography inside the heavily policed metro was previously forbidden due to the underground network’s secondary role as a nuclear bomb shelter.
“I chose to photograph this because the ban in photography had been lifted and I happened to be in the country when I found out about it,” says Chapple. “The pictures don’t mean anything to me per se. They are shots of other people’s work but I’m happy to be able to show that to the world.”
Chapple is originally from New Zealand and travels the globe as a photographer. His images of the Tashkent subway offer an alluring look into Uzbekistan’s past.