‘R€V€£AT¥ON$’ by Rafael Díaz
In the midst of a global economic crisis and a crisis of values unlike any other in recent memory, “Revelations” is a reflection about ambition and the mighty lure of money as a motivator of human behavior and the tribulations it inflicts on mankind through a patchwork of stories from different sources (History, Mythology, Literature, Religion, etc.).
Unrelated as these stories may seem, they have a common denominator: the characters in all of them pay the price for their own ambition or the ambition of others in terms of death, angst, madness, loss, damnation – the ultimate price, made explicit in the $100 bill present in many of the pieces, the interest paid on the gratification afforded by material riches obtained through morally objectionable deeds, as detailed in the fine print of any Faustian bargain.
The name “Revelations” carries different meanings, therefore allowing for varying interpretations of the stories on display here. In its most literal sense, every scene in the series is a revelation in itself, one that presents a defining moment for the characters involved as ‘revealed’ by the eye of the camera. It is also an explicit reference to the Book of Revelation, the final book of the New Testament, also known as the Book of the Apocalypse, which details prophecies concerning the end of days – an ominous metaphor for today’s economic unrest heralding the collapse of the economic system as we know it.
Every story is reinterpreted and brought to life through the filter of my own aesthetic vision, where the human figure takes center stage and theatrical values play as big a part in the end product as the photographic values themselves. The violent contrasts of light and dark are used to enhance the physicality, presence and immediacy of the actors, who carry the full weight of the performance, and darkness becomes a dominating feature of the image, one that creates an intimate atmosphere between the actor and the viewer, ideal for the exchange of secrets… or revelations.