Marco Vernaschi November 24, 2008Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Bolivia.
Marco Vernaschi (b.1973, Italy) lives in Buenos Aires He began working as photojournalist in 2000 covering wildlife and environmental issues. Since 2006 he has focused on cocaine trafficking and production, the Bolivian miners war and the daily struggle of the Quechua Indians living in the remote salt deserts of Northern Argentina. Marco is currently working on a documentary film “Cocaina: The Untold Truth.” He was awarded with the Fuji Film Prize for Photo-journalism in 2005, Young Photo-journalist of the year in 2004 by the Italian Photography Foundation and was a two time grant winner from the Nando Peretti Foundation. He is currently working with the Pulitzer Center to develop the cocaine trafficking project. His work has been published in magazines such as National Geographic, GEO, Mother Jones, Days Japan and Marie Claire among others.
About the Photograph:
‘This widow in mourning was sitting in her kitchen by the picture of her husband, who died two days before. He was killed by other miners, who were fighting for the access to the most productive area of the mine. The Quechua and Aymara people have no popular icons that belong to their ethnicity. Che Guevara, Jesus Christ, and Bolivar are all aliens to their local culture. President Evo Morales represents an indigenous identity – the first time in 500 years. Ironically, one of the effects of President Morales’ policy of nationalization was the war among the miners. These were the people that were supposed to be the main beneficiaries of such change.”