Sunday, 22 March 2009

Child without future, Colombia 1975

This child had no chance in life. When I met him he was twelve and he was a small-time thief in the old neighborhood in Cali. He already was the head of a group of five children who roamed the streets near my mother's house, looking for food in the bins of restaurants, or to steal anything that was possible to steal. Five years later I met him again and he had turned seventeen and had almost graduated from the school of street crime. I gave him a portrait that I had taken of him five years earlier and he returned it saying that it was impossible to keep it since he had no home and that, anyway, he did not recognized himself in it because he never had the chance to see himself reflected on a mirror. I then asked him to let me photograph him again holding the image of himself as he had been five years eralier, and he did. It might well had been as if he did not exist. When he was nineteen he was shot dead in a street incident without any known origin. No one knows he ever existed. Except for these negatives.

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