On the Different Facet of the Door

The previous performs a central position in all the Spanish photographer’s work, together with this venture, which he photographed with a Leica M-11. Navia’s atmospheric photos come up from a journey he adopted searching for traces of his childhood. In doing so, he understands and divulges the idea of “hint” within the sense given to it by Walter Benjamin: “the looks of a nearness, nonetheless far eliminated the factor that left it behind could also be.”

With this collection, you sought to discover “one of many magical territories of my childhood…”
Reminiscence is a basic component of all my work. I take footage to try to photographically reconstruct the previous, ranging from the current. It’s about discovering, within the current, a collection of individuals, landscapes, visible components, and so forth. This may occasionally permit us to create an environment which might show evocative – for myself, as a lot as for these my images.

Out of your perspective, what’s it that makes this territory magical?
I feel that all of us have particular recollections of the locations the place we had been pleased, throughout our childhood. And for me, the town of Hellín as a lot because the street that connects it to Madrid make up this magical territory, outlined by holidays spent with my grandmother – from shortly after I used to be born, up till I used to be eight years previous.

What was it that fascinated you probably the most?
Re-encountering locations and sensations that I had all however forgotten; or which, if I did bear in mind, was due extra to seeing them in previous household images, reasonably than due to what I skilled straight, again then. Additionally, confirming that some issues had been preserved, kind of as I remembered them; whereas many others had modified, radically. And a few locations I assumed I did bear in mind, even, turned out to be completely different in actuality. It’s only one step from reminiscence to creativeness. Because the Portuguese author António Lobo Antunes affirms: “Creativeness is fermented reminiscence.”

Your collection is titled On the opposite facet of the door…
I took the phrase from a novel titled The Lady with the Leica, by the German writer Helena Janeczek. I had simply learn the e book, when Matías Costa, who’s answerable for the Leica Gallery, proposed the task to me.
There’s a second within the novel when one of many characters says: “The previous must be stored rigorously on the opposite facet of the door; but when it knocks, there is no such thing as a treatment however to let it in.” I additionally thought that the title was very opportune, as a result of it was a venture sponsored by Leica; and the novel speaks about Gerda Taro. She was most likely one of many first girls to make use of a Leica digital camera, in 1936, through the Spanish Civil Battle, the place she went within the firm of Robert Capa.

What occurred, while you “opened the door”?
Properly, as occurs so typically throughout my work, as soon as the topic has been freely established and the territory delineated, a thousand potentialities open up. Actuality begins to current itself earlier than my eyes, as if it desires to be photographed.


Your atmospheric footage are fairly mystical – what do you hope to evoke within the viewer?
In fact, I consider that images, and artwork on the whole, ought to at the beginning be evocative, as you say. And it’s much more necessary while you work ranging from emotions linked to the previous; as a result of then the work of the photographer not solely implies a journey by means of area, but in addition by means of time. Christian Boltanski, the conceptual artist, used to say that true communication is established when the sender and receiver someway share a typical previous. And, in a extra generic sense, we will see ourselves as many individuals who share sure basic components of the previous.

Why did you {photograph} so few people?
As a result of I used to be very within the concept of absence. The work is as a lot, or extra, about that which is not right here, about those that are not right here; however, additionally, about that which nonetheless persists: locations, sure individuals who proceed residing within the homes the place they had been born, and the place they had been already residing once I used to go to Hellín as a baby (and that are crucial for my work), and so forth. Even so, should you take a look at the photographs rigorously, I feel that human presence is a continuing someway; it’s about working not solely with individuals, however with the traces they go away behind. In my work, I’m very within the concept of traces, within the sense given by the thinker Walter Benjamin.

How would you describe your photographic method?
I all the time work in color, and within the documentary area. Nonetheless, my method of understanding documentary is inseparable from poetry. I really feel very near the definition as soon as given to us by Walker Evans: “Lyric Documentary”; or, as Allen Ginsberg taught Robert Frank at some point: the straightforward description of one thing may be poetry.

What gear did you employ?
Within the analogue images period, I all the time labored with a Leica (M4-P, M6). My favorite kind of movie was Kodachrome; and, after it was not accessible, Ektachrome or Fujichrome. This venture was photographed with a Leica M11, loaned to me by Leica. The expertise of discovering myself with an previous and beloved software was very passable; it meant that I recaptured previous sensations. I primarily used a 35mm lens; often, a 50mm lens. I feel I’ll proceed working with a Leica; particularly, with an M10-P.

Please full the next sentence: To me images is …
a way with which to try to perceive the world visually, and to “communicate” to the eyes of others, by means of photos. A marvellous craft that shortly became a lifestyle.

Born in Madrid in 1957, Navia graduated with a level in Philosophy in 1980. His work as a reporter is the idea for his photographic narrative: all the time in color and within the documentary area, it coexists in shut relationship with the phrase. Number of books and exhibitions: Pisadas sonámbulas (2001); Nóstos (2013); Miguel de Cervantes o el deseo de vivir (2015); and Territorios del Quijote (2004). Navia has been a member of Agence Vu, since 1992. Discover out extra about his images on the web site of Agence Vu.

Leica M

The Leica. Yesterday. Right now. Tomorrow.

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