The ALBUFERA Natural Park , in Valencia (Spain) is formed by an extension of 21.000 hectares of sweet water and rice fields. The landscape offers a spectacle of changing light and endless plains.
SPECIES, is a sociological study where reality and fantasy get mixed. These images are the pages of a “Catalogue of Species from the Albufera Natural park” Not animal or vegetal species, but human ones.
I portrayed what I consider to be every representative group of that land. They all have something in common: They are inhabitants of this microclimate formed by water. Each group relates with this land in a particular way: protecting it, passing by, getting fed by it, exploiting it or simply giving to it their unearthly beauty as a present.
They float on the water. The landscape acts as magic background: They belong to it and it belongs to them. The people is really there, standing on plastic boxes… NO Photoshop tricks at all.
This series is the result of a trip to a place I didn’t know in advance. I convinced the different groups and individuals to participate in this surrealist portraiture adventure.
The final images are as important as the process -the making of-. What interests me more from this project is “the photography as an event”. The story behind: Making groups of unknown people to pose, being themselves, standing on the water, makes the whole process a performance.
The final result are images which style is marked between social document (portrait of the rural Spain) and a social experiment / artistic performance process.
Species represented in the catalogue are 17: The rice field workers, the unemployed men who spend their time fishing, the beauty queen, the duck hunters, the housewives, the fisherwomen, the firemen, the guards, the waiters, the bikers, the heavy metal local group, the boat man, the landowner, a young boy from the village, the artists and the police…
I develop in photography what I call “Antropología Fantástica”. I portrait in a documentary and theatrical style, people or groups with fantasy and dramatic elements. It is a photo-event in which the actors interpret themselves.
Other Antropología Fantastica projects are: Tribes, Equation and