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HomeTalksCaracas street photography from the eye of Rome Arrieche

Caracas street photography from the eye of Rome Arrieche

Rome Arrieche is a young documentary photojournalist. Guaro, social activist and dreamer of a different world, join us to know his work.

Where did the desire to document the city of Caracas through photography come from?

Born after having migrated in January 2020 to this wild city. Specifically at the beginning of the pandemic, when I was asked a favor in the Ksa de Movimientos Culturales La Mink’a in La Pastora (place I have lived for 4 years) to take some pictures with a tablet to the gas and water operations (it is incredible for me to see so much lack in such a small place, since I come from a semi-rural area north of Barquisimeto). From there, without previous knowledge of photography I was attracted by this practice so pinga, I began to publish them in the networks and it pleased a lot to the caraqueñas and caraqueñas who saw them, I think that not being from here makes me admire this wild city in another way.

Tell us about other artistic skills you have.

In Barquisimeto I dedicated myself to graffiti, stencil and radio broadcasting. I’m currently working hard on documentary photography and video editing to later dabble in documentary filmmaking.

When was your first exhibition and where?

My first photographic exhibition was in the middle of 2021 in Ksa La Mink’a, called PHOTOGRAPHY WITHOUT CAMERA, because I had no camera at that time and the tablet with which I took pictures was from La Mink’a. The name caused its debate and also its good impressions, I think caraqueñxs really like strange and contradictory names and more when they are proposed by people from the interior. It was a big effort to print, everything came out of my pocket with my salary at La Mink’a bakery.

What do you like most about portraying the city?

I really like the faces of the class, I think they express a lot in their daily work, especially anger, effort and joy. The light of Caracas is a very cool thing, especially in winter, its geographical location, its proximity to the sea and its people give you the best light exposures at the time you want, even at night is visual magic that if you are active on the track with an iron in your hand (camera) you can capture high images and as Gerardi says: Caracas is a melting pot of images.

Tell us about the Municipal Photography Award.

It was a recognition in 2021 from the municipality for the Photographer’s Day. Like me, it was received by many fellow street photographers. I felt that in a short time my work was given some value, although I do not depend on any recognition for the value of my practice.

Tell us about “Photography with camera”.

It was already a more mature work of my photography. A theoretical and technical evolution of what I do. It was planned to be done in 2022 but my mom got sick and I had to help her. By 2023 I managed to organize everything and the exhibition turned out better than I had thought. There I was able to give space for debates and conversations about street photography in Caracas, spaces that rarely exist. The printing of the photos was achieved with better quality and the montage was better, undoubtedly one of my best creations in photography.

How was your experience with graffiti?

I was part of the NTS CREW of Barquisimeto. It was in the middle of 2009-2012 with the AKA that I still use. Then some stencil and then to the struggle for the right to land, it sounds strange that turn in my life, but I think that gave me a very particular artistic and social formation.

Any upcoming projects you would like to share with us?

Podcast BURDE AFRO, to talk about Afro-Caribbean struggles and music and PHOTOBOOK about street photography in Caracas today. I hope to be able to make all of that happen.

What message would you give to people who do this work of documenting and who may not have the necessary tools to do it?

Hit it with whatever you have in your hand without fear. I think that street and documentary photography is much more related to our looks than to the cameras themselves, of course, a good equipment will always be brutal to have, but the sensitivity and precision to capture the light is something that will never give us the most expensive equipment but our own look and experiences before the daily reality, hard reality, difficult, but that is where the most real photographs you can have.

I invite you to learn more about the work of this great documentary photojournalist in his social networks, so you can know a look and perspective of the city of Caracas from the eye of Rome Arrieche.

Instagram: @romearrieche

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