Ana Luisa Matos’ work focus on the concept of home and identity. Her most recent series, No Place To Lay My Head explores her relationship to her home country. Developed during a series of road trips, the work captures her reconnection to Portugal, after having spent time leaving abroad, and coming to terms with her own identity.
The photographer’s relationship with her home country has always been bittersweet: it was a place of comfort, security and loving memories, however, there was always a feeling of emptiness present. The outside world seemed more attractive as if life was happening somewhere else. Her search for new ventures away from the familiar led her to South America, where she made her home for a year. Upon her return to Portugal and struggling once again to fit, the concept of home became more complex than ever. All of her former connections have been replaced with scattered impressions of a previous life and home was now nothing more than a coordinate on a map. As life reached an impasse, trying to decide on whether to stay or not, she turned her camera to the same things that made her leave.
Her travels in search of landscapes, dominated by solitude and silence, reflected her inner thoughts, and more than being a form of escapism, allowed her to convey this period of transition in life.
No Place To Lay My Head is a deeply personal journey of looking at one’s identity and trying to find again a sense of place. Looking outward, in search for the mundane and the overlooked she wandered in vacant landscapes, capturing her experience with previously unseen places in her home country and yet the nostalgia of being back home still permeates.
About Ana Luisa Matos
Ana Luisa Matos is a documentary photographer based in New York. Born in Portugal, she studied graphic design and photography. Upon her graduation she was based in Argentina working as a photographer and photo editor. She is a graduate of the Visual Journalism and Documentary Practice program at the International Center of Photography.