Daniel Castro Garcia
Spanish, b. 1985
Aidone, Sicily, Italy, July 2017
Archival Inkjet Print
16 x 16" Image on 16.5 x 16.5" Paper
Edition of 30
Daniel Castro Garcia’s photographs convey traumatic experiences of sub-Saharan migrants who embark on life-threatening journeys across the Mediterranean Sea to seek better lives in Europe. Realizing the complicated nature of photographing the refugee experience as an outsider, he explores the boundaries of storytelling while avoiding clichés of victimization. Working in Calais, Greece, Sicily, and many other sites, Garcia examines the lives and stories of people attempting to integrate into a foreign place, while he simultaneously challenges the visual culture and political rhetoric often used to represent and address the refugee crisis.
Aidone, Sicily, Italy, July 2017 (2017) is from the series I Peri N'Tera (Feet on the Ground) (2015–18), which focuses on portraying the experiences of youth migrating from Africa to Italy via Libya. Garcia worked for an extended period of time at a center for unaccompanied minors in Sicily that housed twelve sub-Saharan teenage boys. This image pictures Ams, a seventeen-year-old boy, standing in a makeshift mosque at the center. The room was once a convent and then a home for the elderly, and Christian iconography of saints and prophets still adorns its walls.
Garcia studied Spanish and Latin American literature as well as management studies at University College London. His book Foreigner: Migration into Europe 2015–2016 was published by John Radcliffe Studio and was shortlisted for the MACK First Book Award and for the Paris Photo Aperture Foundation First Book Award. His work has been included in exhibitions at the Refugee Law Initiative at Senate House Library, London; the Organ Vida Photography Festival at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb; and the Wagner Gallery at New York University; among others. He received the British Journal of Photography International Photography Award (2017), the Magnum Foundation Fund (2017), and the W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography (2017). His work was featured in the 2019 MoCP exhibition Stateless: Views of Global Migration.