Since the invention of the photographic medium, the city has been a constant resource for the production of images. And not only for photography: other forms of visual creation, such as the cinema, have long been used to document different urban realities.
Whatever the medium, capturing city life in images has historically come with an unavoidable tendency toward romanticism. This fact, realized over many decades, has resulted in the predominance of visual clichés that have turned certain cities into global icons. The skyline of New York, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia have all become visually synonymous with those cities.
By avoiding the repetition of classic imagery, this project intends to break free from these longstanding stereotypes to create a new visual interpretation of several western cities. It seeks to portray the present reality of values and behaviour that permeate today’s urban culture.
These photographic series focus on the daily activity of public spaces: the metro, sidewalks or any interior space depicting anonymous individuals of different gender, race and social condition.
All of these images have been taken in the city of Paris, where he moved specifically to concentrate on this particular type of photography. As Marcel believes the images indicate, the main propose of this selection is not to show Paris “as we know it”. The images could come from any western metropolis. Within the whole body of work exists a clear effort to escape from the cliché in order to present blurred but credible characteristics of contemporary society. Solitude, individualism and ambiguity are some of the abstracts that compose the overarching narrative of these visions.
To some extent, this project was made possible thanks to the artist residency he obtained in the Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris from 2011 till 2013. Lens Culture FotoFest Paris portfolio review 2011 was the first place these photographs were presented. This is a complete first stage of the project that is ready to publish, exhibit and sell in limited edition.
Recently the Prints and Photographs Department of the Bibliothèque nationale de France acquired part of this series for its permanent collection.
Photograffiti – Russian International Festival of City Photography, featured his work in first position among all submissions inviting him to the exhibit in the festival and participate in the awards.
Marcel’s work will be published in Lens Culture Magazine upcoming issue.
The photographic work of Marcel Pedragosa presents reality from a distinctly personal point of view. With a high sense of aesthetics and ease for formal composition, each of Marcel’s pieces maintains a balance that allows a leisurely exploration of the relationship between people and their direct environments. Such a broad artistic orientation accommodates a constant scrutiny of the immediate world and brings the fleeting moment to the forefront of Marcel’s photography.
Barcelona born and raised, Marcel possesses an innate understanding of cities and the artistic opportunities they present. He has captured images in varied settings around the world, though he is most drawn to urban environments, where his photography unfolds with considerable richness. Marcel currently lives and works in Paris, where he is developing his photography in relation to urban spaces and culture.
He currently alternates his activity as a photographer collaborating with Magnum Gallery in Paris part of Magnum Photos.
Leica M7 and a Leica Summilux-M 35 mm f/1.4 ASPH