Born in Mozambique in 1977, Filipe Branquinho works and lives in Maputo. He first studied architecture in Mozambique, but moved to Brazil on a scholarship to continue his studies. It is here that he took interest in photography and illustration and began a process of self-taught exploration into photography.
Curator: John Fleetwood
Occupations documents and reclaims urban identity and space in the city. In this portrait of Maputo, Branquinho layers post-civil war, colonial and institutionalised bureaucracies and realities with the vibrancy of professionals, new and self-made economies and the animation of the streets. At once the narrative asserts synthesis of the architectural context and the inevitable presence of the individuals that occupy it. However it also alludes to the presence and relationship of a photographer that is in conversation with individuals. The photographer becomes one and all of multiple occupations: historian, anthropologist, journalist, architect, art historian, fellow citizen. In this, what seems to be a mundane exchange, is a subtle confirmation of relationship, of citizenship that delivers and dignifies identity.
This notion of photographing people and their places is core to his practice, like it is in the tradition in Mozambican photography. Having grown up amongst photographers like Ricardo Rangel, Kok Nam and José Cabral, Branquinho’s lingered inspiration has now settled.