by João Pedro Marnoto


"The great photographers have "magic"- a revealing word that comes from Steichen. I believe that “magical “ photographers" are documentarians only in the broadest sense of the word." 

Berence Abbot in Ensaios sobre Fografia: de Niépce a Krauss, Oganização de Alan Trachtenberg, Orfeu Negro, Lisboa, 2013, p. 202

"Journey with no route" is an impressive series coming from photographer João Pedro Marnoto addressing life´sfragility and the bipolarity of contemporary world. This visual narrative displays the many contradictions that plague human relationships and diverse territories in our current time, and does so in a particular way.

We are taken by the rich and complex images that make us somehow want to look at them again and again trying to capture life´s inigma: The expression of pain and terror of an ape, which arises as a metaphor for the sufferingthat man inflicts to himself and to other animals; the anonymity and loneliness of the crowd, which comes through the cut-out figures backlit and isolated buildings that compete to see who is the tallest between them: the caring and erotic view of a nude woman who reminds us a Renaissance venus; pollute natural environment, adulterated by industrial infrastructure and simultaneously appropriated by man in their leisure times; and Auge´s non-spacesor the large malls and urban spaces full of contradictory signs.

The author reveals through a set of images, which entail a great intuition, sensitivity and magic, the complexity thatattends to human existence and how economic logic, without hindrance or substantive regulation, is appropriating itself of the territory in an entropic way. A project of personal reflection, a set of meaningful memories that the author wanted to register by creating adocumentary narrative that, on one hand, allows as the author says "... to revive and recreate those memories.Where the purpose is the journey itself. As life. "On the other hand, it is a photographic series that does not limit itself as being just a record of a number of situations, people and places, but that deconstructs these places andlives by way of a very specific visual poetry of its own, and thus transcends what is specific and goes beyond life´s contingency.

Unmistakably, a very interesting photographic project that combines autobiographical and poetic elements, making a documentary series whose structure creates a musical sequence that incorporates a life and colour palette that transcends the frozen moment of each image. Thus, it meets contemporary photography with a different magic, without rejecting the decisive moment and taking as subjects humanity and difficult social conditions.


Pedro Leão Neto



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