Project Detail: The wound of man

Contest:

Verzasca Foto Festival Awards - 2019 Nera Prize



Brand:

Verzasca Foto



Author:

Claudio Albarrán

 

Project Info

The wound of man

The Project its about a story that goes back to the adolescence of my father, a countryman who, during a nocturnal walk, claims to have been attacked by the devil. The encounter that my father had with the devil echoed in a symbolic way in his personal story in the future; since years later he was the victim of several car and work accidents, as well as having cancer of the penis that left him with permanent physical marks. I take this specific incident -not with the intention of talking about my father-, but as an allegorical impulse, to contemplate on the myth as a source of anthropological understanding about the relationship of the human with the unknown, with its own destiny, and with its own nature.

"All the stories of all people are symbolic; I want to say: history and its events and protagonists allude to another hidden history, they are the visible manifestation of a hidden reality ".

- Octavio Paz


I grew up listening to the several anecdotes that my father told, most of them took place in his hometown, a place - like many other places in southern Chile - full of mysticism. Within this range of stories there is one in particular, which by its strong symbolic load was recorded in my memory, and after a time of reflection managed to position itself as a starting point towards an intimate visual essay, around the relationship of man with his demons.

The story goes back to the adolescence of my father, a countryman who, during a nocturnal walk, claims to have been attacked by the devil, who pushed him into a river. My father managed to get out of the water, had courage and went after who had tried to kill him to get revenge, but could not find him. There are endless stories with similar characteristics in our collective imagination and folklore, in which the appearance of something "evil" is a constant. Stories that tell us about the encounter with what is impossible to understand or control, and the intrinsic vulnerability of our own existence.

The encounter that my father had with the devil echoed in a symbolic way in his personal story in the future; since years later he was the victim of several car and work accidents, as well as having cancer of the penis that left him with permanent physical marks. I take this specific incident -not with the intention of talking about my father-, but as an allegorical impulse, to contemplate on the myth as a source of anthropological understanding about the relationship of the human with the unknown, with its own destiny, and with its own nature. Extrapolating the figure of the devil towards concepts of symbolic character, and positioning myself in a place marked by the masculine, the violence and the sexual.

For years I have dealt with anxiety and anguish as a burden, and I believe it is because every human being creates a family history of its own, an individual historical myth to account for its origins. Within my genesis, a dark figure is rooted in a context where the limits between reality and fiction are diluted. This project is born from the autobiographical; of experience and consideration of my environment, which ends up being the reflection of a psychological scenario delimited by a fluctuating memory.

Photos