Salvi Danés is a photographer because he cannot draw. He has searched for a way of representing reality, and has found it in photography.
The camera is his only tool. The instrument he uses to investigate the cities through its inhabitants. He has a curious eye, especially to capture intangible details and peculiar expressions in his photos:
”… all of them are born from an unconscious impulse to observe, recognize and even possess, produced by the emotions a certain situation can make us feel”.
Among the many recognitions, he has been selected for the Foam Talent 2013, and has entered the shortlist of the Sony World Photography Awards 2012 with the series Black Ice, Moscow. From Barcelona, where he now lives, he tells us the secrets of his projects.
Why do you take pictures?
I guess to translate in some way what I see and recognize myself in it.
How did your artistic journey begin and what inspired you at the beginning?
I always liked to draw. But having no patience or a lot of hand for it, photography is a good ally.
From the series ‘Dark Isolation, Tokyo’
Who do you photograph?
I photograph everything that for some reason catches my attention.
What do your photos represent? Could you choose a photo and tell me how it was born?
I would not know which one to choose. I guess they are all born from an unconscious impulse to observe, recognize and even possess, produced by the emotions a situation makes us feel.
From the series ‘Holy Polska’
What it takes to take a picture …
Put together the objective, the head and the guts.
Analog or digital?
Both of them.
Do you have a favorite camera?
No, I use several. I like the change of register and even the methodology that varies when changing format.
From the series ‘Black Ice, Moscow’
What are you working on now? Your next projects?
I’m focused on a project about the city where I was born and where I currently live, Barcelona. It is a tribute to the city although to speak of the city as receptacle and continent is to speak of the different manifestations of its content: the humanity that inhabits it, and that suffers it or enjoys it.
What is the project Fragments about?
It is made out of old postcards from Barcelona. I like its function as a fragment in the form of an image in its previous part and its personal history on its next part. It reminds me that every photograph I take has a story behind it.
THE LAUNDRY ROOM
What are you most proud of?
When you are not photographing, you:
Think about photograpy.
If you had to pack your things and leave only with your most beloved objects, which of your photos would you take with you, and why?
If I could only take a picture with me, it would be for sure one where my mother appears.
If you hadn’t been a photographer?
I would have chosen something related to drawing or illustration.
All of them, even from the worst one you can learn something. At least how not to do things.
Three adjectives to describe you.
Observer, impulsive and stubborn.
A city to describe you.
All of them. They all have more in common than what it seems.
A movie to laugh.
Lost in translation
A movie to cry.
Lost in translation.
Right On for the Darkness by Curtis Mayfield
I do not like concerts too much, the music for me is part of something very personal, to enjoy it in privacy or with the right people.
The happiest day of your life?
It still has to come.
The mistake you would be proud to repeat?
Work as a photographer.
To wake up every day.
To discover everything about Salvi Danés, salvidanes.com
Interviewed on October 3rd 2013, original version in Spanish.