The Ocean’s Vow’ is a collection of 30, 297 x 420 mm photographs. It frames lives of the subsistence fishermen in Vilankulo, Mozambique. The exhibition was hosted by Bahia Mar Boutique Hotel and 60% of all sales donated to the Bonguili Project, addressing the complete lack of kindergartens in paradise.
Exhibiting was one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done. I found helluva intimidating.
Susana Vidal – general manager at Bahia Mar Boutique Hotel – and I made the entire collection available for purchase online.
There is something about a man and his boat.
The above portrait of Domingos and Pavane (his ‘Dhow’) was one of the first pictures I took when I started working on this series.
DOMINGOS AND PAVANE (above) was taken shortly after sunrise, early May 2016. Notice Dominogos’s cap with the emblem of the South African rugby team. “Oud-Springbok by die see…”
‘Did a tourist give it to him? A South African guy who came fishing one December? Or did he buy it at one of the many second hand clothing stalls in the village market?’
At this early stage of the project not many of the local fisherman I asked for permission to take their picture really felt comfortable or agreed, so when Domingos smiled and nodded, he catapulted the project into motion, allowing others to follow suit.
One afternoon, in that very same week in May, this boy in is orange T-shirt and denim jacket actually asked me to take his portrait. After printing this picture and giving it to the boy a few days after, I learned that it was the very first printed photograph he ever received of himself. I then started doing the same with each of the portraits I took, whether I planned to include them in the final selection to exhibit or not.
I am often asked if the final picture, FISH IN HIS POCKET (below), was staged. It wasn’t. People seldom believe me. Why he wore his suit to go fishing, I’m afraid I won’t ever know, but I can speculate: It might be one of the few pieces of clothing he owns? Maybe he came straight from a funeral or a function? I personally think a more likely explanation could be that he simply needed pockets to put each small fish he earned by helping to pull in the catch of the day.
Most of these images are still available unframed and sell at 300 US$ each. I sign and ship the print to you wherever you are in the world.