Camino por Desierto
Photograph, acid free carton, ink, artist frame made half of American walnut, half of European walnut
Camino por desierto, which stands for "I walk Through the Desert" or "Road Through the Desert", is a series of 10 collages. Each include a different black and white photograph of crossing beetle tracks in the Sahara sand, stamped words and wood both from Europe and America. The work is accompnied by the following text.
On March 13th 2018 I took a walk in the Sahara Desert close to the Oasis town of Timimoun, Algeria, where I was tracking back my ancestor’s migrations on a genetic memory trip in Maghreb. The landscape was exclusively sand dunes, at all cardinals until my eyes could see. An ocean of dry orange sand agitated with hard waves of slow-moving sand dunes. There seemed to be no possible life around, temperature was close to 40 degrees Celsius, no trees were allowed to grow deprived of water or soil. No shadow was provided for animals to shelter from the punishing heat. This absence-of-life-moment had an anxiety effect on me. Perhaps it was precisely this that I was looking for, going to the deep Sahara. Some hope raised suddenly when I spotted tiny tracks on the sand down my feet. A closer look had me assured that some life happened. A bug had been walking right here where I stood, just a short moment before me. Its tinny legs would leave precise but delicate imprints in the thin sand. I took a photograph and started following the trail. Every few steps I took a photograph as not to lose myself. After a brief moment of trailing I encountered a trail cross, a meeting that might never had happened. I took a photograph of the crossing paths and continued on the first trail until another crossing appeared where I took another shot. I followed the tracks for almost an hour until I had mapped all of them. Eventually one track went a long way and reached a palm shade where stood the remnants of some animal dung. My mystery trail eventually led me to find shit.