Life and its great comedy

There are places in the world difficult to photograph. Places whose real and living essence few would capture just with a camera and a lens. There are also individuals difficult to portray. People of such intense and complex personality, that to make the eternal in an image would imply a serious challenge.

Iquitos and its people are part of this unwavering universe; a city in the Amazon, rich in history, flora and fauna. It is a hot city, of various myths and of infinite colours. It is a complex city, inhabited by beings of unrepeatable and passionate enthusiasm.

Morfi Jimenez took on this challenge. With his camera, he delves into the most out-of-the-way streets on this earth and while coming across the soul of its inhabitants he discovers a surprisingly lavish universe. After the long journeys Jimenez has made during the past four years, he takes us back to that risky frontier where fiction and the document are united with much difficulty. Once more, Jimenez succeeds with flying colours. Like a fish in the water, Morfi navigates the warm shores of the Amazon documenting everyday scenes that, framed in the robustness of the jungle, are protagonised by characterful provocateurs. Every single Individual, all of them, has a personal story so intense and particular that they seem to be enacting their own fiction. As such, Jiménez illustrates each story, where the character is given a leading role to represent what he or she feels corresponds to what life has laid out in front of them in a manner of overflowing joy that only an Iquiteño knows how. The photographer at times becomes the Scene Director thereby eliciting from the “performer” the best possible comical representation of his or her own life.

Furrowing the wet riverine streets, the task continues. Jimenez’s lens opens, presenting an almost theatrical framing where the light casts an intense dramatic burden. An eminently personal chromatic treatment revives the utopian and unattainable Amazonian colour. As is his style, Morfi has produced a "fictional documentation" in which original elements of reality are transferred to a magical setting without losing the solvency of the truth. Reality-fiction, fiction-reality, the great comedy of life.

Exhibition held at Contemporary Art Museum (Lima).

Text published on catalogue of II Photography Biennial of Lima.