Juan Orrantia

Photographer
   
Why would...
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Nationality: Colombian
Biography: Juan Orrantia makes photographic works that involve subjective approaches to the postcolonial condition and experiments with the representational function of the image. For this he explores different modes of photographically interacting with... read on
Public Story
Why would...


In 1986 Chris Marker released his famous film Sans Soleil (Sunless). Partly based in Guinea-Bissau, this film posed questions about history, memory and the passing of time. Marker saw the small African country as a pole of survival, a site of liberation where the anticolonial leader Amilcar Cabral led a revolution that resulted in the first independence of Portuguese colonialism in Africa. At that point, it was a site of hope, sharing anticolonial solidarity strategies with places like Cuba and Brasil. But things didn’t turn out that way. Cabral was assassinated and a series of betrayals began. Today the country is considered a failed state characterized by political volatility, poverty and corruption, often labeled the “first narco state” due to its role as a bridge in the distribution of South American cocaine to Europe. I travelled to Cabral’s hometown in search of his traces and soon found myself wandering among the debris of colonial legacies, loose presences of Cold War solidarities, greed, and murky realities. So I focused on a space of imagination to speak to a more complex unfolding of history, to the way dreams have settled under the passing of time. Ultimately, I wanted to follow the question asked by Marker about Guinea- Bissau: “Why would so small a country, and one so poor, interest the world?

Medium format film, low quality film, and appropriated images(Portuguese Fascist propaganda films)


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By Juan Orrantia —

VISUAL STORY

Like Stains of Red Dirt--Book

By Juan Orrantia — ​ Book available ​​​ Like Stains of Red Dirt Like Stains of Red Dirt brings together a series of moments..
VISUAL STORY

Like Stains of Red Dirt--Book

By Juan Orrantia — ​ Book available ​​​ Like Stains of Red Dirt Like Stains of Red Dirt brings together a series of moments..
VISUAL STORY

Like Stains of Red Dirt

By Juan Orrantia — Like Stains of Red Dirt Like Stains of Red Dirt brings together a series of moments that recognize an..
VISUAL STORY

Is this Tomorrow (Fotofria)

By Juan Orrantia — Is this tomorrow  (2018). Collaborative project with Zahara Gómez and Mauricio Palos ...
VISUAL STORY

Normalcy

By Juan Orrantia / Colombia — When I arrived 6 years after the massacre there were no statues, no monument, nothing to remember the..
VISUAL STORY

There was heat that smelled of bread and dead fish

By Juan Orrantia — There was heat that smelled of bread and dead fish is conceived as a journey through the passing of time..
VISUAL STORY

Residues

By Juan Orrantia / Africa, Mozambique
VISUAL STORY

The afterlife of coca dreams

By Juan Orrantia / Latin America, Colombia
VISUAL STORY

While I was thinking about sex

By Juan Orrantia / Latin America, Colombia, Bogota — Fragments of adolecent memories and the shaping of masculinity. (ongoing)  
VISUAL STORY

Escapees

By Juan Orrantia — It almost became a topic of dinner conversation. Should we leave? To Miami or to New York? By the early..
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