El Nino que se bana en la calle
In 1998, when shooting pictures in Santo Domingo for the first time, I chanced upon a most charming boy, with a huge smile, who was basically taking a bath in the street. I used the image in my ‘l’opéra minora’ without giving much thought to its future.
When back in the DR, and going through the same zone, the thought occurred to show the image to people and see if they knew where the boy was. I couldn’t locate the image then, but promised to bring one on my next time around, and even asked my girlfriend (at the time) to please make sure to go around and show the image and ask people if they had seen the boy.
On subsequent trips, on several occasions, I showed the image. My girlfriend (then wife) told me she did too (if only once, or, ‘maybe twice’). Just to play on perception and people’s expectations, we showed the picture to people in different barrios and far-flung regions. The response was often the same. Either people could not identify him, or else, they would lead us to a boy, but not him, another, who could have been him, somehow… A great twist on photographic identification…
But then, this happened. Always of the mind that frameworks are actually excuses to ‘show’ something else, el nino que se bana, which was one photo and lots of texts was going to have a complement, which was, one paragraph, and lots of images – del pais, de la ciudad, de… through one lens, a whole background, a whole world… Of those who were indentifying him, misidentifying him, or even inventing him.
One image, leads to many others. One photo, leads to many inventions. Constructions, illusions, fabrications. Fictions. And texts to accompany…
This is also a capitulo of Zona|Still