January, 2020. Zanzibar, Tanzania.
For about three weeks, ReSources Zanzibar took place initially as a performance. Every day, used to walk through the surroundings of Stone Town, UNESCO World Heritage Site and core of Zanzibar most traditional, commercial and touristic centre. In every walk, have repetitively shot analog photographs of selected twelve different locations, one photograph of each place. Repeatedly, everyday looking after immersing deep into the relationship between waste, water and delay, purposefully studying these concepts by embracing them through analog photography both as a performance, method of research and future exhibition. Thus said, each location and exposure incorporates the presence of waste or water, making possible to observe how these two free flow during the twenty one days the denominated Photography Circuit was taking place. The current exhibition unfolds from the second Photography Circuit and so on.
Immaterial. Waste as social pollution.
Furthermore, the mere and shallow presence of waste all over the island, critically at times in certain areas is not only clogging drainages but at some extent, ultimately creating pollution and interference between humans. As the study suggests, everyday around the same twelve locations, observation did naturally at first glance seek for waste and water. Yet water aside, waste was at times a constant in all pictures -of the same place- yet in other cases, not anymore. Hereafter, if for example the places are somehow taken care of, waste disappears, allowing the self or in this case the present researcher, to see how everything else that was always there starts to unfold. When there is no waste to look at, the more essential aspects of every scene will become present, brighter almost. The present under an auto-ethnographic point of view.
In photography, digital or analog, one can recall the concept of depth of the field. Depth of the field is nothing but a slice of the frame the photographer has in front, deciding sometimes for something very thin all the way up to a thicker slice that could capture on focus basically the whole scene. Whereas the concept suggest depth, in practice means more what’s focused and what’s not, and here is where the idea of superficiality of the field comes along (Van Lier, 2004). The allusion refers to the poor depth through which we photographers look at what we photograph, or with the detail level we humans observe what we observe or, what we do not observe.
Daily duty. The Photography Circuit.
Considering the Photography Circuit a repetitive activity to do every day for twenty one diurnal courses, one can argue that observation essence and quality get more acute, deep and wide not only towards the twelve locations themselves but also to everything in between. It is fascinating to see how an experience sharpens by only repeating and forcing itself, deliberately forcing in this case to see more. The exercise through analog photography will be to purposefully delay the researcher as waste delays drainage as an abnormal accumulator, being rain for example a normal and expected accumulator. However, not only the photograph daily time will delay any other activities, but also subsequently considering the handmade development, scanning and editing of 385 black and white pictures. Lastly, this exhibition finally counts about 176 photographs taken in the twelve aforementioned locations. One can argue that an activity like this is waste of time and although nothing in this project is studying that phenomena in particular, it is a fair approximation to explore and understand this unaddressed construction when it comes to time and our relationship with it.
ReSources Zanzibar comes to life as in the form of online throughout this website. The exhibition itself seeks to apply the same principle of delay, to be experienced by the visitors in an unnecessary but suggestive way. While all photographs could simply be exhibited at once, ReSources Zanzibar unfolds one photograph at the time, purposefully and optionally slowing down where others don’t have that freedom of choice, as explained.
For 176 days, www.resourceszanzibar.com will daily display only one photograph of the Photography Circuit which total is 176 photographs. Consequentially, a new one the next day and a new one the next day and so on, until all photographs taken back in January 2020 in Zanzibar island are shown. This is a full Photography Circuit.
All 176 photographs will be exhibited at once only by the end of each Photography Circuit. The first Photography Circuit was performed in Zanzibar, where analog photographs were taken, as for now, the exhibition starts from the second Photography Circuit in here, where the same analog photographs take place in an infinite exhibition.