Venezuela

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Photography

Portraits of Venezuelan Families Reframe the Harrowing Journey of Immigrants

January 10, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Arianny Torres packed a few changes of clothes, a couple toys, medicine, diapers, a baby bottle, photos of relatives and her bible into her backpack. With her son, Lucas and daughter, Alesia, she traveled 976 kilometers from Maracaibo to Bogotá. Sometimes they hitched a ride. Other times they caught a bus, cutting into the small amount of money Arianny had put aside for food. Now she sells candy in Bolivar Square and though things could be better, at least life is more stable than it was in Venezuela and her kids are able to eat three times a day. I see Arianny’s determination to find a more hopeful life in her fixed gaze.” All images © Gregg Segal, shared with permission

In his Undaily Bread series, Gregg Segal photographs Venezuelan immigrants with the entirety of their belongings lying around them. Created in collaboration with UNHCR, an organization that helps refugees worldwide, the affective project shows a glimpse at what life as a Venezuelan refugee looks like, from the meager ingredients of their daily meals to the battered sneakers on their feet. Every image posted on Segal’s Instagram also includes a lengthy caption describing each family’s difficult journey.

“For me, photography communicates better than simply words. Statistics are important, but people are not that interested in statistics,” Segal tells Colossal. “They’re emotional because they describe how little the people have.” This consequential series is an offshoot of Daily Bread, Segal’s well-known project that captures images of kids from around the world surrounded by what they eat each day.

“Nathalia Rodriguez (9) who walked from Barquisimeto, Venezuela to Bogota with her mom, ate only bread, crackers, arepas, chips, water, juice, lollipops and the one fruit they could afford, bananas. It’s been 3 years since Nathalia’s eaten an apple. Apples run 5,000 Bolivas now in Venezuela, about $12 US. Despite the harsh road she traveled, Nathalia projects resilience and resolve.” 

“Yosiahanny’s daughter feels for the kick of her brother or sister in her mother’s womb. They made the journey from Venezuela surviving on arepas and water. Though life in Bogotá is difficult, Yosiahanny is grateful she’s able to eat more than once a day. What makes the crisis tolerable is love, she says.”

“When I met 7 year old Williams, he showed me his backpack in which he carried a few things from home including his last homework assignment. He misses his grandmother’s arepas and stewed chicken. On the long walk from Venezuela, there was only bread, water, cookies and fruit to eat.”

“Michell, a single mom, made the trip with her two kids twice. During the 2nd attempt, Michell had an epileptic seizure and lost consciousness. 16 days later she made it to Bogotá and was admitted. In her portrait, Michell contends with the dueling energy of her kids, trying to soothe her daughter while her son appears to be driving the bus. After the shoot, her little boy held onto two loaves of bread, carrying them around the studio, tucked under his arms for later.”

 

 



Photography

An Interactive 360° Aerial Panorama of the World’s Highest Waterfall

February 29, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Maybe I’m just a huge geek, but I found this vertigo-inducing aerial panorama of the world’s highest waterfall, Angel Falls, and nearby Dragon and Cortina Falls in Venezuela to be pretty incredible. This takes a few steps, but trust me it’s worth it. Head on over to AirPano and if you’re on a nice fast internet connection (or have a moment to wait) click the “High Resolution” viewer. You can turn off the music down on the bottom, click full-screen on top and then use the thumbnails on the right to switch views. Then click and drag anywhere on the screen to explore 360°. Unless you plan on traveling to Venezuela, renting a helicopter from a gold mine and flying perilously close to the 3,200 foot (979 meter) falls while dangling upside down from said helicopter, this is the next best thing. Angel Falls is so tall that the water never reaches the bottom, instead the flow turns into a dense fog during its half mile flight.

The panoramas linked above are actually from the first part of a 2-day trip in which the photographer, Dima Moiseenko, struggled with weather and other unexpected conditions to get the right shots. See a number of panoramas from his second day of shooting, and don’t miss AirPano’s full listing of close to 70 aerial projects.

Lastly, a contender for your new desktop background.

Update: For those of you who think this scenery looks uncannily like the backdrop of Pixar’s movie Up, you’re right.