May 22, 2011
EXOTIC AND DISENCHANTED
A few years back, during a presentation of my NAG (Not Yet Global) book, a gentlemen pointed out to his impression that I still had an exotic view of the world. With an opposite view others are suggesting that too much and too long traveling have made me disenchanted in front of the world wonders. Contrasting reactions to my work are not surprising: I struggle to find a personal vision of the contemporary world, and I may be as confused as everybody else living these times of global transformation.
Everything is changing fast these days. The world wide web has destroyed the previous communications system and has not created a new one, yet. So the speed of globalization is faster then how a human being can adapt and develop ideas in this unstable cultural environment. What is left to us to tell? To show in images? To interpreter with a personal vision?
The obvious answer would seems to be the evolution itself: the changing, the consequences on society, on individuals. In the travel photography field of expertise, we should probably show not what is left to see of the traditional (exotic) world, but why is still worth to fly hours to understand the underneath cultural differences in a world that may seems already flattened. To be in the streets of Seoul, Singapore, Sao Paulo or New York may seems no different, and in fact the visual impact is the same, but the life is not. Is a subtle difference, much more difficult to render through images then what it was to show costumes and villages. But this is the challenge for the contemporary photojournalist, and the public will be interested, at least a part of it.
I will not surrender to the idea that the forthcoming world for travelers will be composed only by beach resorts, cities for shopping, a few museums. Culture is inside the human being, and is expressed not just by it's dressing and tech gadgets, but also by ideas, behaviour, ancestral inheritance.
So much for my exotic vision of the world, that would be just ridiculous. And about enchantment.. well, I have developed an high threshold to achieve it, but I long for every opportunity to find it.. even if it is a sunset that let me put down the camera and enjoy it just to myself, just for the sake of it.
at 5:09 AM