Heroin, its consumption and addiction, have always been complex topics.The main discourse that is associated to hard drugs and their troubles, even in the present, are too simple, retrograde and in all cases contribute to keep this subject buried in silence and at the margins.
My first encounter with the hard drugs underworld had me conscious of how attached I was to prejudices and misguided conceptions of a place I frankly knew nothing about. The most frustrating aspect was seeing myself in the mirror of that reality, so close to me and ignored for so long. Words were insufficient to describe what I saw and felt. Escaping the limits of words and translating the living affect of drug users into an audiovisual language has always been a challenge in this project, but a challenge that has opened paths into new reflexions.
Clip from short film "Gianky", 2017.
This project starts on a practical note since 2014 when I was 17. Through my photographic practice I began a friendship with a heroin user called Gianky who has been my mediator and guide into the world of hard drugs. One of the key elements that entered the project was when Gianky told me, that in all of his interactions with people who have tried to help with his addiction, I was the first person to ask: What is it that you really want to do? Apart from entering, investigating with, and documenting the communities I come in contact with, the bond of trust and friendship I share with Gianky, has given me access to experiment and discover the most intimate and personal zones of this project. Now I look at myself in that mirror and I question, not only my personal experience with drugs and its users, but the relationship I hold with myself, my pleasure and my own living. I have never had any intention of solving addictions or the rehabilitation of any of my collaborators. I wish only to observe, learn and make art from this liminal space and find the humanity hidden here.