For the past ten years, Ed Wray has been a photographer for the Associated Press, based in several capitals in Southeast Asia, most recently as Chief photographer in Jakarta. He approaches his work with a keen eye toward transformational situations – “in between” states where people are affected by the energies that change a situation from what was to what will be. We asked him about his Monkey Town series which he photographed in Jakarta.
Ed Wray was terrified the first time he encountered a masked monkey. Having lived and worked in Jakarta as a freelance photographer for years, he was accustomed to seeing the animals, cruelly leashed by chains, jumping through hoops or riding trikes on the sidewalks. But for Wray, the mask was a terrifying twist.
“When I first saw a monkey with a rubber baby doll’s head stuck over its head as a mask, it immediately struck me as horrifying and beyond weird.” Wray said. “Something about the combination of the doll head – which I think is scary looking to begin with – and a long tail just struck a chord in me.”