… a story in two stages.
Back in 1989 I left Brazil to live an adolescent dream: to live abroad. Somehow I guess it was more than a dream, it was an inner necessity, like breathing. I know it sounds too much, but the changes it brought to my point of views are the excuses for me thinking like that.
I was leaving a quite comfortable life, with family and friends, to the solitude (there was only letters taking 15 days to get to its destiny – telephone calls were too expensive) and the language barrier. I also had a nice job, working as assistant for a photographer and a quite famous brazilian artist at the time. I was already playing with my own photos, mainly street photography, but once in a while trying the artistic possibilities of the camera.
My first stop was London where, apart from the regular pubs-kitchens jobs, I also had the chance to go to a photography course that allowed me to go further with my experiments, basically printing on transparent plastic surfaces. I was fascinated with that, transparency allowed many different layers to regular pictures.
Later I went to Amsterdam, and because photographic slides were cheaper than in London, I ended up chosing them to go deeper with the idea of making collages with photographs. I would use two projectors to have double images on the wall and then I photographed this images.It could be two photos, or a photo and some plastic sweet wrapping paper, you name it. This work helped me to have an exhibition in Rotterdam.
When I came back to Brazil, this work also helped me to find a job at MTV, and there I learned about the existence of computers and graphics software which made my work much easier.
In Holland I also started buying slides at flea markets. I don’t get the idea of selling personal pictures, but there it was, diapositives of the 50s and 60s, people travelling around Europe, slides bought from touristic stands, I don’t know, I bought more than a thousand of those. I remember once I performed at some kind of underground festival and my piece was like a room where people would seat on a sofa to watch a selection I made, as if they were watching my last vacation or something. It was the only time I used the photos I bought in the flea markets.
(this story could be much longer, but the basics are there)
Fast forward to 2014.
I always enjoyed the concept beyond images. Of course I like photography in general, but I guess because of my artistic backgroud I want something more. The detail. The reason. The story behind. I read a lot about it, all the theory: Sontag, Barthes, Berger, and I mixed all that with the the concepts of graphic design. A big mess.
Then I was reading Joan Fontcuberta’s “The Pandora’s Camera” and it came to my mind; I should stop creating images, I should finally go check and sort my slides archive and bring them to life.
Of course I can’t stop producing images (my tumblr has 4,222 photos and it bothers me but I don’t stop). And I am not sure of what to do with the slides too. But I need space, I need to really see what’s in those boxes. And that’s what I trying to do, filtering, choosing the ones that tells me something, that play with the idea of non professional unknown photographers with nice cool images that “speak” a lot with the contemporary.
I needed to explain that. Some people might think this series is made of my pictures but they are not. They are a draft for something else. This text is a way to start thinking about it.