City of Shadows

Santiago de los Caballeros
May 2004

My intention when making this work was not necessarily to document in a direct way the whole process but of making a metaphor, these people with those that interactúe entered left before my camera making same reference to its emigrant situation.
This work tries about the emigrants of those people that regularly live in our cities like shades people that lack any identification type they are anonymous entities and only are important when  we need help, they are always there.   They doesn't appear inside the urban census.

Fausto Ortiz

City of Shadows

The anonymous status of undocumented immigrants---in particular, the Haitians--is a major concern of the Dominican photographer Fausto Ortiz. Outside the census, these immigrants live like shadows in the city, participating in the fabric of the society only when needed to perform the jobs no one else will do.

The photographic medium is ideally to Ortiz’s interest in documenting those who are undocumented. His triptych Compartiendo la Libertad (Sharing Freedom), 2004, shows two men leaning against a wall as they wait, in vain perhaps, for something to occur. The shadow of the wire fence is a subtle yet poignant reminder of the barriers and borders that separate countries and people. the invisibility and alienation of illegal migrants are suggested by the ghost of a the last part of the triptych. Cuidad de las Sombras (City of Shadows),2003 again employs the image of the shadow. Here it is all we see, a specter of the undocumented people, not only in the Dominican Republic but around the world.

TUMELO MUSAKA, august 2007
Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art
Brooklyn Museum, NY 11238-605