an Ethiopian runner staring out the scene at the New York City Marathon


26 Jul 2019 CONTAINERS
a female child playing with a lit sparkler

Featuring: Andrew Oberstadt

Presented by

International Rescue Committee


Curated by

Meredith Whitefield

The IRC’s response to asylum seekers here in the U.S., is the first of its kind in the history of the organization. The current administration has forced us to shift our focus from the day-to-day work of integrating new arrivals, to providing for families within our borders.

Exhibition photographs and videos of IRC’s work in the U.S. explores the arc of resettlement; different types of arrivals and welcomes, as well as our organization’s long commitment to rebuilding lives and communities. The visual display will illustrate the journey to resettlement, the value that new Americans add to our communities, and the consequences of the administration’s dangerous policies.


Andrew Oberstadt is a videographer/photographer from Holland, Michigan, now based in New York City. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Film and Video at Columbia College Chicago, he served in the United States Peace Corps (USPC) in Senegal. Upon completion of USPC service, he remained in West Africa and worked as a freelance videographer, covering news events, and environmental and human interest stories, including the 2015 Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone.

Since joining the International Rescue Committee (IRC) in 2016, Andrew produces multimedia stories about resettled refugee families in the United States, the United Kingdom, the Middle East, and East and West Africa. While visually documenting refugee stories is paramount, Andrew’s photographs are also providing insight into how Trump-era policies are targeting refugees and dismantling the resettlement system in the U.S.

Most recently Andrew photographed asylum-seeking families that the IRC supports in Phoenix, Arizona. Although he was a member of the media team when he was in Phoenix, Andrew participated in IRC’s emergency response, assisting with transportation logistics while taking photographs of individuals and families traversing the U.S. asylum-seeking process.

When Andrew is not producing multimedia stories for the International Rescue Committee, he is experimenting with multi-exposure film portraiture, street photography, and making music videos for West African artists.


The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises. It helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future.

In more than forty countries and in 26 U.S. cities, our dedicated teams provide clean water, shelter, health care, education, and empowering support to refugees and displaced people.

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