Cattle Fairs by Nick Gandano

Photography puts you in front of the mirror, it shows you who you really are. Through a slow and progressive decanting process, photography allows you to know yourself, to know what kind of person you are.

Photography puts you in front of the mirror, it shows you who you really are. Through a slow and progressive decanting process, photography allows you to know yourself, to know what kind of person you are.

In my opinion I lack the right tools to be a good documentary photographer. Despite this, sometimes I have the need to tell stories, to show certain worlds through photography. I think that the main weapon I have to try to do it is my ability to observe.

The good documentary photographer is the one who delves into the subject he wants to deal with, immerses himself in it, reads, investigates, finds out, inquires, talks with the characters that inhabit that world and finally takes photos. I lack those qualities and for some time that frustrated me.

I have always been attracted to the decadent, those things that over time lose strength and intensity. Perhaps that is why I decided to photograph cattle fairs. Over a period of two years, I visited the fairs in my area (Algeciras, Estepona, Prado del Rey, Jimena de la Frontera, Medina Sidonia, Ronda, Casares) to photograph them and tell something about them. My approach was to adopt the point of view of a mere spectator who captures scenes with his camera, at no time was my intention to photograph from within. Sometimes I would talk to people to ask them for the occasional pose and by the way learn something about the fairs in general but without going too deep as I say. Something very in keeping with my personality I suppose.

Livestock fairs are no longer what they used to be. That is the phrase that he used to hear most often in the places he visited. The lack of generational change, the bureaucratic obstacles in the transfer of animals, globalization, climate change, the flight from the countryside to the city and probably other reasons that escape me, are some of the reasons why the fairs go losing over time.

Today I think that for me photography is above all about enjoying taking pictures. And that these images, in one way or another, are able to speak for themselves, to the point that sometimes they can tell something far removed from the photographer’s own intention. At the time I enjoyed taking these photos. Today I bring them together trying to show something about a world, the world of cattle fairs around me. [Official Website]

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