Gianluigi Guercia is one of the 25 photographers shortlisted for the 2020 CAP Prize for Contemporary African Photography.
I’ve been living through images since I was a child. I sneaked in my parents’ bedroom and watched hundreds of movies while they were asleep. My photographs are a concise summary of cinematic images often narrating tales of solitude and bewilderment.
My pictures are a mirror of myself and the strong idea that I have about the surrounding environment, the one where I move or travel through in Cape Town. These images found me around a street corner, in a public pool, or in a hairdresser’s salon.
At this stage of my journey, I search for a more thoughtful and personal approach. Different themes and layers converge in one and unique narrative. I'm interested in a category of subjects that often represent a sort of contemporary minimalism while working on my discrete act of seeing.
A balance of shapes, lights, and subjects. In that loneliness, the possibilities of re-appropriating an innocent gaze free from the prejudicial perception of reality; not the short term appeal of an image of a sought-after anecdote are present. Faces and movements that are common but different, again, that are a reflection of myself trying to fill a void that is in all of us.
I recognize myself in the “other,” with a gaze that distances itself from any form of judgment. A loneliness that is inevitable, desperate lives looking to find meaning, a companion or a solution for that feeling.
The inspiring thoughts of Italian Photographer Luigi Ghirri resonate in my understanding and approach to the medium. He says that photography has become an opaque layer, filled with images that are superimposed on reality itself. I dig again through that opaque layer, often hunting for an image of myself.
To represent this idea, I humbly try to slow down and extrapolate images from this magmatic flow that continues to desensitize the ability of individuals to look without a preconceived approach, while trying to minimize the violence of a photographic approach that dares to understand and decode reality.