Rafael Vilela

Forest Ruins (ongoing)
Location: São Paulo, Brasil
Nationality: Brazilian
Biography: vilelaovilela@gmail.com Rafael Vilela is an independent Brazilian photographer currently reporting on social injustice and the environmental crisis in his country. He was one of the founders of Midia NINJA , an initiative that today has more than... MORE
Public Story
Forest Ruins (ongoing)
Copyright Rafael Vilela 2023
Date of Work Mar 2020 - Ongoing
Updated Jul 2021
Topics Climate Change, Culture, Documentary, Editorial, Environment, Essays, Ethnic minorities, Faith, Fire, History, Human Rights, Indigenous, Latin America, Minority, Nature, Oppression, Pandemics, Personal Projects, Photography, Photojournalism, Racism, Spotlight, Urban
Forest Ruins is a personal ongoing project that addresses the role of cities in the climate crisis from the perspective of the Guarani Mbyá Indigenous people in the city of São Paulo, Brazil, and how their philosophy, culture and traditions offer alternative paths of existence and resistance to a colonial development model. São Paulo is located in the Atlantic Rainforest, a biome that has only 20% of its original area. One of the few remaining areas in the city is located in the 492-ha reserve of Jaragua Peak,  which is home to 700 Mbyá indigenous people, organized in 6 villages, and it is the smallest demarcated indigenous land in the country. Telling the unrevealed story of the Guaranis on the edges of the largest city on the continent is a provoking reminder for Western culture to rethink its consumption habits, to look back at its rivers, areas of preservation and degradation as the environment in which they are inserted. I started this research 2 years ago with the support of National Geographic Society and a selection of the images produced were published on NatGeo’s and in the book RED FLAG, winner of the World Press Photo 2021 Book Award. 
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Forest Ruins (ongoing)  by Rafael Vilela
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