Guet Ndaru Mol is one of my continuous photography projects. Now after summer break I thought I would focus particularly on portraits and make a series that would have a retro feel and reflect the organic nature of the local fishing business. Here’s for starters:
The local fishing community feels the effects of climate change first hand and many families have already lost their homes to the sea. Their lifestyle is vulnerable and alarmingly threatened because of coastal erosion and rising sea levels. A few years back we hosted documentary photographer Greta Rhybus at Waaw and she made a fantastic photo series on climate change in Senegal.
In Saint-Louis life really spins around fishing. There are anglers on the edges of the river; men in water up to the waist – or sometimes neck – throwing in their nets both in the river and in the sea; there are small boys in giant wooden fishing boats called pirogue on the shores just waiting to grow and follow in the footsteps of their fathers; there are boat builders, engine repairers, horse carriages, fish dryers, men sleeping on giant mountains of blue nets, waiting for departure or resting after a night out in the sea, net repairers, refrigerators, ice vans, ice factories… and the big fish market where women handle and sell fish and where the other-worldly scenes of busy crowds, melting ice and crazy chaos with some hidden order to it make it one of my favorite spots in the entire town… That other-worldliness is what I am hoping to catch into my portraits.