Yellow butterflies, the insomnia plague, gipsy ice sellers. Gabriel Garcia Marquez’ Macondo is a place of poetic imagery. For the 50th anniversary of the writer’s masterpiece, One Hundred Years of Solitude, Venezuelan photographer Luis Cobelo recreates chapters of the book through magical shots.
Zurumbatico means dull, inebriated, melancholic. Reading this word in One hundred years of Solitude, Venezuelan photographer Luis Cobelo found an adjective to describe his own personality. Cobelo could easily live in the novel, maintaining the same dreamy, unabashed, sensuality as Marquez’ characters. “Some things people find strange are very normal to me” the photographer tells us, “If someone told me that he met his mother’s ghost on his way home, I would believe him.”
Marquez’ magical realism is the recurrent theme in Cobelo’s series. The photographs represent Gabo’s unique writing style that casts a trance inducing spell on the reader. These pictures are to him, simple answers to the unexplainable. “Immersed in this ‘zurumbatic’ dimension, I understood that there is no explanation to the unbelievable, it is how it is”.
The photographer calls his tragicomic photography “very Caribbean”. His gaze is at the same time dramatic and indulgent. The series will be presented at the Cortona ON THE MOVE Festival, in the form of a 104-pages long book. Much like the villages where Marquez’ stories are set, Cobelo’s universe is a-spatial and a-temporal, but at the same time, incredibly real.
Images from Zurumbático © Luis Cobelo