Outlandish, hot, sweet, salty, bitter, fiery, stinky, sexy, ruthless, incredible, beautiful, terrible - these are the adjectives that sum up my experience in Iquitos. I was meant to stay 5 days and ended up staying 10.
My bowels hurt after arriving at the producer’s market port: the true Mad Max of the Amazon rainforest. And during the same day my heart was rejoicing with the Iquiteños' attitude towards life: bright and colourful, like their houses and dresses.
As a foreigner, while walking through the streets of this city, it was impossible not to feel dizzy with so much visual stimuli. Sometimes the visual burden was such that I did not knew what to photograph next. I wanted to document everything but at the same time I felt powerless because of the impossibility to do it.
One of the things I was most impressed by was people’s attitude towards being photographed. Nobody was reluctant to stay in front of the camera and nobody told me “it is forbidden to take pictures here” - the most common negative affirmation of my trip. During my stay in this town I got access to various houses in this city and in Padre Cocha, a small village half an hour away from Iquitos.
This is a selection of pictures in chronological order from the third day in town. I spent the first half of the day in the outskirts of the Belen Market and the afternoon at the port of Nanay. In the evening I enjoyed a cold beer at the glorious El Refugio video pub with Enrique Pezo, a fellow photographer to whom I am very grateful for his advises and help. I’ve included a picture of him sitting in “great company” in the bar. It's the last picture of this lot. Now you know why I’ve called this place glorious. The interior was painted by Peruvian artist Ashuco.
Looking back at my work so far (the part that isn’t available to you yet), I realise that I will have a really hard time editing. I’m still not sure what end form will the project have. But I have a couple of ideas.
Next stop: Santa Rosa.