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Mustafah Abdulaziz January 28, 2009

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Chile, Patagonia.
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Cerro Castillo, Patagonia

Mustafah Abdulaziz (b. 1986, USA) is a self-taught photographer who studied journalism in Pennsylvania and embarked on the road of documentary photography after freelancing and interning for the Tribune’s Morning Call newspaper in Allentown, PA. He has since done work for Newsday, Polaris Agency, and BlueCross/BlueShield. In 2008, he joined the photo collective MJR, a group of young photographers specializing in fashion, wedding, art, and photojournalism.  He has attended both the Foundry Photojournalism and Eddie Adams Workshop in 2008. He has since relocated to Philadelphia to begin a long term project on the affects of the national economy crisis and escalating violence in the City of Brotherly Love. Mustafa recently won two 1st Place Awards at the Atlanta Photojournalism Contest (1st Place Portraits, 1st Place Sports Picture Story) and photographed the Obama inauguration on assignment for the Wall Street Journal

About the Photograph:

This was taken in Cerro Castillo, a small outpost town at the far bottom of Chilean Patagonia. I had been photographing cowboys and their changing culture for a few weeks before this, and when I heard there was going to be an annual rodeo held, I headed off to shoot it. I knew this rodeo would draw young and old from all over to prove themselves against each other, but I was interested to see what it’d be like. Patagonia is particularly harsh sometimes and the cowboys forged from this land have a bit of romance to them, which they are somewhat aware of. But taking part within the rodeo was this underlying current of cultural change: the young did not dress in the traditional clothing until they arrived. They text on cell phones and they drank Coca-Cola products. And even during the rodeo, they were videotaping on new Panasonic recorders. This picture represents the old culture in the story.

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