Country/area: Mexico

Organisation: Polaris Images

Organisation size: Big

Publication date: 2 Dec 2020

Credit: Alessio Coghe

Project description:

Through my everyday documentation I would explore how Mexicans are experiencing the pandemic, so I photographed all our these months in the barrios of Mexico, from Downtown to suburbs, and in some areas of the state of Mexico (EDOMEX).The selection of photos presents everyday scenes in busy streets, but I wanted to offer a look that also presented how some workers cannot help but remain active. In Mexico the economy is based for over 70% on the informal one. 

Impact reached:

I propose this project to sensibilize about the difference between a country as Mexico in respect to European countries in their battle to defeat covid 19. A struggle that certainly takes its example from the lawsuit faced 10 years earlier with H1N1 and that with caution it must take into account how devastating certain measures taken in other countries would be for a country like Mexico.

It also presents an idea that goes against many stereotypes in which it is stated that Mexico in many contexts is reported as a third world country and devoid of basic rules of democracy. According to the WHO, Mexico has done well and Health Subsecretary Lopez-Gatell is now part of the WHO. 

Techniques/technologies used:

I used a reflex Canon Rebel T3, a Fujifilm X100S and a Fujifilm X70. I used my street photographer approach combined with my experience as a photojournalist to obtain an impactful work from a visual point of view, taking into account both the formal and content aspects. As usually I photographed shooting JPG straight from the camera with a minimal editing work in Adobe Lightroom. 

What was the hardest part of this project?

The work has been realized in some north popular neighborhoods of Mexico City, where is not completely safe to photograph. I photographed in some parts of EDOMEX (state of Mexico) and north of the city. I photographed also in Tepito (the barrio bravo) a popular neighborhood (barrio) in the heart of Mexico City. 

Despite it shows normal situations like portraits of workers, it is not that easy to go with a camera and photographing. The work should be selected because is pretty far from the cliche and the theatre of pain. You will not see the usual images of people in the hospitals and the visual rethoric of doctors and sick people. 

What can others learn from this project?

I think I answered this already in the previous ones, but to resume:

– To tell a story without using the classic rethoric and the theatre of pain;

– To document something not told from the usual narrative;

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