Myanmar: Beyond the Surface

Beyond the Surface

'Myanmar: Beyond the Surface' is a long term photography project and documents how the country looks like after 60 years of military dictatorship and international isolation. The project shows how history has shaped Myanmar's society and tells the story of how the country and its people are changing since the regime started to open up to the world in 2011.

View trailer:


10 different stories
From all layers of society

Between August 2013 and November 2015 people from all layers of Myanmarese society have been photographed. The result is 10 different stories, from the richest to the poorest people of the country, different people in situations but all connected by their common past: Life in a dictatorship.

The Beat of Yangon

The Dictator's Grandson


The misunderstood disease

View: "How I got sent to the Leprosy Hospital"

The story of Mister Silver, a 89 year old man suffering from Leprosy and living in a Leprosy village. Even though leprosy is one of the world’s oldest diseases, it is still greatly misunderstood in Myanmar.


The Shelter


The Oil Fields

An Audience with a Warlord


A Funeral on the Farm


Man on a Mission
Politics in a dictatorship

Documenting the life Ko Nyi Nyi and his mission to help the NLD become the biggest party of the country. 


From Battlefield to Parliament

The Festival of Thundering Lights

The Book
Myanmar Beyond the Surface

The book Myanmar: Beyond the surface was published in November 2015 in the same week that the country had its first free elections in over 60 years. The book contains the 10 stories in 284 pages of high-quality printing accommodated by thorough background stories written by renowned journalists living and working in Myanmar.


Editor in chief: 
Maarten van der Schaaf

Book concept & design: 
Maja Molière & Océane Combeau

Copy editor:
Geoffrey Goddard

Marcel van den Broek

Book Binding:
Boekbinderij Patist

Book Printing:
Koopmans Drukkerij