Vicente Paredes »
Exhibition: – 23 Dec 2017
Wed 22 Nov 18:30
Place de la Gare 3
+41(0)21-922 48 54
Exhibition: 22 November – 23 December, 2017
Public opening: Wednesday, 22 November, 6:30pm
This series of diptychs confronts the viewer with two seemingly totally opposed representations of childhood: on the one hand, young upper-class Spanish horse riders participating in pony racing events; on the other, children living in modest conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo. By causing this unlikely “photographic encounter” between young teenagers who bear the weight of social pressure and young Africans forced to work to support their families, Paredes ironically points to the stereotyped views that still prevail in our post-colonial societies. His photos reveal the disparities between colonisers and the colonised by focusing the viewer’s gaze on the current issue relating to children’s image rights. The portraits of the young Spanish jockeys, which have been blacked out to ensure anonymity, contrast with the faces of the Congolese children exposed to the lenses of photographers from the world over, with little or no respect for their private sphere. By showing this rather inconvenient truth, this work leads us to question the social construction of the ‘poor African’ image and, more broadly, the power of pictures that remain etched in Western consciousness.
This project was the subject of a book published in 2015 by "This Book is True," a publishing house established by Spanish artist Cristina de Middel. In 2016, the Pony Congo publication was named in the Best Books of the Year category at Fotobookfestival Kassel and featured among the finalists for the Author Book Award at the Rencontres d’Arles.
Born in 1972 in Orihuela, Spain, Vicente Paredes studied journalism at the University of the Basque Country before training in photography at London’s Westminster College. He currently lives and works in Bilbao where he teaches at the Centro de Fotografía Contemporánea. His works have been exhibited in venues such as La Fotoescuela in Valencia, Kultur Etxea in Oñati and Sala Kursala in Cadiz as well as at festivals, including Encontros da Imagem in Braga, Lagos Photo and Getxophoto.
Espace Images Vevey is supported by Fondation Nestlé pour l'Art.