“PIRUW”, on Friday 12th October 2018, at 18.00 hours, at: House of Lucie Center for Photography 1 Ekkamai 8 Alley, Phra Khanong Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110
PIRUW RELATES THE STORY OF THE MYSTICAL AND THE MAGICAL THAT STILL LIE IN THE REMOTEST CORNERS OF THIS ANCIENT LAND, PERU. THERE ARE NO BORDERS, NO SENSE OF OWNERSHIP, RATHER A PERVADING SENSE OF THE OPPOSITE. THE DENSE, RICH, BLACK-AND-WHITE TONES OF THESE PHOTOGRAPHS BEAR WITNESS TO THE RAW, UNTAMED RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PEOPLE AND THEIR ENVIRONMENT.
“There is something apparently contradictory in these photographs, a fact that both disturbs and seduces at the same time, a feature that gives them a strange and hypnotic power. Because, instead of looking for clarity, the authors wanted to immerse themselves in the kingdom of shadows, as if they wanted to take a journey back to their origins, to that state of affairs in which darkness prevailed and there were hardly any shreds of light, enough to give a meaning to the world.
This option fits in perfectly with their proposal: to observe beings in their own habitat who live closely with nature and whose atavistic ties we hardly sense from our western point of view. However, the peculiarities of the authors’ record, of their unique way of capturing men, animals and landscapes, transcend what we might call anthropological documentary photography. Certainly, they have managed to penetrate that hidden dimension that often escapes those who use their cameras for scientific purposes. It’s amazing how far they’ve gone in that area. In good conscience, they have endeavoured to mimic the communities they have portrayed, to such an extent that they have touched the impossible: to adopt their gaze, to give us the sensation that, even fleetingly, they have glimpsed those arcana that are the emblem of their existence.
If trapping reality is an ephemeral attempt, these photographs suggest to us that there is another reality that is even more inaccessible, one where ancestral truths can only be accessed through magical rituals. Hence the mysterious aura of these images where nothing is what it seems, or rather, where everything is possible. Yes, there is something magical about these pieces of shadow slightly wounded by the light, about these chameleon figures that metamorphose before our eyes, thanks to the very subtle vision of Nolte and Searles.
Dealing with the darkness, forcing the legibility of the image, entails risks that only photographers with a remarkable command of their craft and an exquisite sensibility are capable of facing. In this case, the coincidence between aesthetic aspirations and the management of technical resources is admirable. Otherwise, these photographs are disturbing because they are not only meant for contemplation. Rather, they reveal the desire to explore unsuspected territories, the need to transfigure reality. The visual compositions stand out for the creation of evanescent atmospheres that transport us to a dream environment, to a place of the soul where a timeless clamour resounds. They are located on that border where human experience succumbs to the splendor of the sacred.
Musuk Nolte and Leslie Searles have managed to glimpse an intimate and secret fire, the one that only shines in the depths of darkness. After all, photography is the art of unveiling.” (GUILLERMO NIÑO DE GUZMÁN)
Leslie Searles (Arequipa, Peru, 1978), studied in London and Italy and specialized in films and monochrome photography. Become the finalist of the “V PHotoESPAÑA OjodePez for Human Values Award”, with her work “Tercera Frontera” in 2012; presented her photos in “(Re) Presentations Contemporary Latin American Photography” within the framework of PHotoESPAÑA 2013. Before her recent fame, she had been a member of many renowned art societies, such as, the Society of Young Artists Beyond the Valley (2004) and Salon (Hall) 21 (2004). She also worked as producer and photography assistant to the famous Italian photographer Georgia Fiorio.
Musuk Noltes (Mexico, 1988. Naturalized Peruvian), graduated with academic excellence at the Image Center in Lima, Peru, in 2007. His works, a beautiful mix of serious documentary photography and pure art, were exhibited at notable places, such as Art Museum of Lima, the Musée du quai Branly, Paris, and at many galleries in Germany, Brazil, China, Spain, USA, Netherlands, Ireland, Mexico and Singapore. He has earned several awards and recognitions such as the Eugene Courret Award (Peru), and Juan Bartolomé (Spain). He also has recently secured second place in the Poyi LA’s portrait category.