Stereotypes about Colombia and Colombian men are what we get in the US, and I suspect the rest of the world. We have ideas of drug traffickers, gang members, FARC, corrupt officials, and, in the US, immigrants, documented and otherwise, working as rather invisible labor in fields and gardens, and other tasks. I have been struck by the dignity of their lives in Colombia. Context matters, history matters, family, culture and traditions matter. Cut off from that, without all possibility of understanding, we are reduced to caricature.
I started to realize that I had been photographing a lot of different men. The first reason is that the public space in Colombia is dominated by men. I also find the men interesting in their presence, their sense of dignity and pride. I cannot recall, in my two months here, seeing an angry man, or a weeping man. I will be focusing more on women and sharing the photos I already have of women in the future. For now, here are some of the men of Colombia.
Harley Davidson Club, Villa de Layva Photo Credit: Joanne Bretzer