Pachama, the Miners of Bolivia, 2019
In Bolivia, nestled in the Andes Mountains, the cities of Oruro, Popoó, Uyuni and Potosi are home to many mining dating back to colonial time, that continue to support the inhabitants of a region threatened by poverty.
Juan Manuel Castro-Prieto went to meet the population to understand their way of life, witnessing their rites and discovering their vision of the world, always rooted in ancestral practices and beliefs.
The entire economy of these cities turns around mining, which reminds us that without their exploitation, these cities may no longer exist.
One of the most famous places: Cerro Rico, a mountain that dominates the city of Potosi and is the region’s main mining resource. In the past, it had the world’s largest silver veins, but even today it contains many resources such as tin, silver and magnesium.
Fearing the prosperity of their mines, Andeans person organize several events to honor their deities. One of the most spectacular ceremonies is the ritual of Pachamama, the goddess Mother Earth, celebrated during the carnival of the Potosi mines.
This is followed by four days of festivities during which Juan Manuel Castro-Prieto captures these precious moments of pleasure. In a colorful ambiance, the Bolivians parade and dance in sublime costumes bearing the effigy of Pachamama. It is a way for them to enhance their cultural identity and to spread the history of Bolivia.
Popoó et Uyuni