Based in Rio, I have been working in journalism since 2013. Recently I published a reportage on Morgenbladet, a weekly norwegian newspaper; Noisey (by Vice) on Karaoke Nights in Rio de Janeiro. Also on Vice, I did a story of the five years...
A couple marries in traditional african costumes during the biggest - so far - collective same-sex marriage in history.Even though Rio is known for being "gay-friendly" recent times have made the community stay with their eyes wide open. Cases of homophobia driven violence appear every so often in the media.
The national brazilian flag was a constant symbol during the years 2014-2016, by both sides of the political spectrum. In this picture, taken at a protest against president Dilma, a man uses a shirt that says "Against Corruption", referencing the PT´s goverment.
Theatricality is a big part of the protests in favour of Dilma´s government. Also using the national symbols, the politicians that support Dilma´s mandate say there is a "coup d'etat" being developed in Brazil.This photo was taken at the verge of the impeachment voting in the congress.
Rio´s security secretary, José Mariano Beltrame, salutes a police officer while a colleague searches a teenager in the outskirts of Copacabana. The so called "operation summer" consisted of security forces frisking mainly black youth in buses before they could come to the south zone beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema.The main motive was to decrease theft in the neighborhood. Ironically, the Secretary has a shirt that reads: " For a Rio without barriers".
In Rio, police kills a lot and gets killed at almost the same pace . In 2016 alone, more than 60 officers were killed in and off duty. To be an agent in Rio is to be uncertain about the very next da. This photo was taken during a protest against police brutality
Violent deaths are part of Rio´s daily life. This picture was taken at the funeral of a black young men who was killed along with three other friends as Police officers shot more then 100 times at their vehicle. The agents justified their actions saying they thought they´re drug dealers. Police in the state of Rio de Janeiro have killed more than 8,000 people in the past decade,including at least 645 people in 2015
Clayton Silva was a 17 year old teenager that was found dead in a community near Copacabana. Neighbors and friends said that Clayton was last seen being taken to an empty area by police officers of the local PPU; Pacifying Police Units.To be a "favelado" is to be uncertain about the very next day.
the Pajé Ash, from the Ashaninka tribe, poses for a portrait near an elevator. Behind him stands the Wiphala, the flag that represents the native people of Latin America. Brazil is one of the world's most dangerous countries for land rights activists with at least 50 killings last year, according to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR)
Conspire originally meant "to breathe together". In Brazil, specially in Rio de Janeiro, the host city of the olympic games 2016, this verb has a subtle undertone. I started covering the 2013 protests in Rio as they erupted, during the Confederations Cup, and saw its development until middle 2014, at the verge of the World Cup. Brazil has been, for almost its entire history, an extremely bigoted and socially excludent country. it was not, however, a country of violent political clashes, of direct confrontation. It´s violence was almost always in the background.
The recent changes in Brazil, caused in part by a mixture of globalization, high economical growth - and now in fallout - and a more workers friendly government, spearheaded by PT in the last 13 years, led to the development of a historical crack in the once homogenous and class rooted societal sphere. The country where the tradition was to arrange its problems in the backstage with traditional players was suddenly forced to go to the streets once more, yet divided.
In this almost theatrical environment I saw conspiracy theories blossoming, rich with difused claims and ambiguous understandings of "truth" and "lies", "heroes" and "villains". Some say there is a Coup D´etat happening in Brazil, while some swear that Dilma´s government is communist, ready to implement the Communist Manifesto while instituting "The International" as the new national hymn.
Yet, in the background of all of this political bubble emerged a plethora of characters and people from all kinds of lives that try to cope with Brazil´s every day problems and get their voices heard. Be it the indigenous people, dealing with a system that treats them as souvenirs and a mere curiosity, or brazilian women as a whole, since most are afraid of violence against them.
Last but not least, there are the poor, mostly black, almost certain young, men that kill and die every day in Brazil due to systemic violence. Almost symbiotic, the supporting roles they play - Police and thiefs - are almost non-important in the grand scheme of this 21st century brazilian soap-opera. After all, the show must go on, and the crowd conspire in order to maintain the spectacle, not realizing they are, as well, playing a part.