Pt I. in a two part series (I was just going to do the one post tomorrow, and then I serendipitously came across these today via woods_s_lot).
"Bureaucracy is an everyday form of state power with which citizens are confronted everywhere. Jan Banning has done portraits of bureaucrats at all levels, from village clerks to governors. Although the bureaucrats pose, their desk is the real subject. That is the permanent expression of their status and power. The person behind it is interchangeable, during his working hours assuming the role of immigration officer or revenue agent. That is emphasized by the pose in which he is photographed: as an actor playing himself. THE OFFICE (India/Indonesia, 2004-2006) is a work in progress, eventually to include bureaucrats in ten countries. The series on Bihar, a state in the world's largest democracy, India, is completed; the series on Indonesia has just begun."