I would like to offer a ‘reverse re-make’, with, I hope, good reason. Sebastião Salgado is rightly seen as one of today’s most influential photographers. As part of his Genesis project, he was in Papua New Guinea in 2006. Here is an example image, a pair of musicians. Beautiful image, which he shot in an ‘outdoor studio’ (hence the background).
In 1994, some 12 years earlier, we visited Papua, in the same Highland areas. In particular we visited the Huli Wigmen. young men who spend roughly 18 months growing their hair, to make wigs for ceremonial purposes – and that’s all they do. I took images of individuals and groups, although without a studio. In fact my current work is mostly ‘environmental’.
I have always been interested in human interaction, and the two men depicted seemed to be having an interesting time. Who said what to who, and why the look?
I don’t hold this up in any way better – that would be rather silly. But I think the approach is different enough to warrant discussion. When we document, what are we, as photographers, looking for?
Image © Sebastião Salgado (2006) used for research and teaching purposes only