obscura photography project pandemic riodejaneiro brazil e

OBS-CU-RA | Portraits of Isolation in Brazil by Artist Bruno Alencastro

A photo essay immersed in enigmatic atmosphere, such as the indecipherable future

In times of isolation and uncertainty, creativity flourishes in very beautiful ways.  Brazil, a rich stage for thinking ‘outside the box’ has been faced with the circumstances to let all its natural creative force show up.

With references from the ancestral of the photographic camera, attributed to the Chinese philosopher Mozi, in the 5th century BC, to the Renaissance and its first use as an optical device, and the likes of Picasso, Picasso, Matisse, Magritté, to his most recent inspiration in the work of Cuban photographer Abelardo Morell, artist Bruno Alencastro has created & directed a cooperative photographic project  to register the lives and emotions of individuals during the pandemic isolation period.

Obs-cu-ra is the sum of it all. A series of portraits designed by photographer Bruno Alencastro from the 4th-floor window of the apartment where he lives in the Copacabana neighborhood, in Rio de Janeiro. From there, he went to the homes of 12 more Brazilian photographers who agreed to turn their houses into large-format obscure cameras and captured life in times of pandemic. Each with its uniqueness. Achievements and losses. Wishes and privileges. Fears and hopes.

NITERÓI, BRAZIL – 24/04/2020: Beatriz Grieco, 21 years old,  is a Cinema student. She is isolated in her bedroom from where she studies and work. © BEATRIZ GRIECO


RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – 24/04/2020: artist Bruno Alencastro, director of photography, and his wife Greyce Vargas, journalist,  both 35, take their self portrait in their apartment at the iconic neighborhood of Copacabana. © BRUNO ALENCASTRO


SÃO LEOPOLDO, BRAZIL – 02/05/2020: Caroline Muller, is a photographer and ballet dancer. She is self isolating with her boyfriend, a medical student working on the frontline in the combat to the pandemic in Brazil. © CAROLINE MULLER


PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL – 03/05/2020: Eduardo Seidl, 41 , is a university professor. Isolated at home with wife and two kids, 7 e 4 years old. © EDUARDO SEIDL


CACHOEIRINHA, BRAZIL – 25/04/2020: Eveline Medeiros, 25 , is a photographer and holistic therapist. Isolated with the elderly parents, they all belong to the risk group. © EVELINE MEDEIROS


RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – 04/05/2020: couple Felipe Martini, 32, a multimedia journalist, and Rafaela di Giorgio, 31, and architect arquiteta, had to cancel their wedding and relocation to Spain due to the Pandemic. © FELIPE MARTINI


SÃO LEOPOLDO, BRAZIL – 15/04/2020: Rodrigo Blum, 31, is a photographer and had most of his work canceled due to the Pandemic. © RODRIGO BLUM


MONTENEGRO, BRAZIL – 08/05/2020: Ursula Jahn, 26, is an artist and had all her commitments cancelled due to the pandemic. She is still creating. © URSULA JAHN


PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL – 03/05/2020: Guilherme Santos and Gabriela Thomaz, and their son Joaquim, 7, isolated at home. Gabriela is a yoga instructor and continues her classes via video conferences. © GUILHERME SANTOS

“As a photographer, I was doubly distressed by this pandemic. For all that it’s been causing, but also challenged to think about how to document all this without being able to leave the house.” Bruno Alencastro

TRÊS COROAS, BRAZIL – 01/05/2020: Pedro Rocha, 39, lives in the countryside with wife and two kids. They have the privilege of a remote location, meaning they can go outside into nature without meeting other people. © PEDRO ROCHA


Bruno Alencastro

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Perto. Mas longe. #ficaemcasa

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