This body of work is the result of my personal concerns in relation of my family background three generations back, specially on my father’s side where a lack of information exists on different matters, for example, my great grandmother’s name or family name and what was the cause of her death, among others. My interests fluctuate between the silence, the secrets and the lack of memory between the members of my family.
The philosophy of ALMA relies on my investigations on Psychogenealogy, which treats the patient’s illnesses or traits as unconscious connections of issues that have been passed on from his or her ancestors. From this point of view, the soul of a family issue is something that hasn’t been solved within generations, since our story is defined by the loyalties, the rights, the duties and the rituals that are interfering with our goals and dreams.
In these images, all black and white diptychs, I try to convey a dialogue between light and darkness to represent the lack of family information and so to create another story; a recreation of the forgotten or silenced biographies of my grandparents and their parents, and therefore my own. This is a story which takes place in Palestinian territories, in Arabic language and under the Orthodox Catholic Church, and develops between wars, forced displacements and migrations which intertwine the melancholy and the solitude of a permanent alienation.
Life Carriers: Portraits. 2017
These portraits were taken as part of a project on which I documented the daily life of children with HIV who, for different reasons, live in a hospice in the outskirts of Guatemala City. In my project, I tried to communicate the life, joy and dreams these minors have regarding the challenges they face every day. In this place, more than 60 children are being cared 24/7 by a group of professionals who try their best to give them a healthy and loving childhood. The mission of the hospice is to provide them a normal life until they reach 18 and leave to the outside world, knowing how to take care of themselves. These portraits were taken voluntarily. I used the multiple exposure technique to keep their identity anonymous.
Note: The text above was written by the Artist. No modification was made by C.O.C.A.
I was born in El Salvador in 1967 and left the country for political reasons in the late 70s. As I grew up I studied ballet, contemporary dance and then, Graphic Design in college. Later on, Literature and Photography. I worked for almost 10 years as a Literature and Language professor in different universities. From the past six years I have been working as a free lance editor consultant for different institutions and exploring photography as a medium for self expression. Since 2016 my work has been selected to participate in art exhibitions and auctions in the country. In 2018 my work ALMA won the Gold and Silver Awards in TIFA (Tokyo International Foto Awards) and the Gold Prize Award on PX3 Paris, France, 2018, for Book Proposal-Fine Arts Category. I live and work in Guatemala City.