22 abr 2012

Cédric Van Turtelboom


Since nearly 3 years, I’m spending time in Romania. I’m travelling all around the country, most of the time I try to sleep in private homes. I always go there during the winter when the days are short and work is missing. This can explain the dark and heavy atmosphere but not without humor. In my photography, there is often an important part of senseless or fantasy. With a frontal and uncompromising approach, I like to break the visuals expected references in order to undermine rationality, often with humor.

Noroc is an essay about a country: Romania. A changing country, full of contrasts and unfortunately also one of the poorest in Europe. Here is a more personal text of introduction. I write it during my trips. Stuff I have seen or heard. You can use it or not or just some parts.

Building a house takes time, sometimes several years. First come the foundations and the essential rooms. Other rooms are furnished and heated as and when funds permit. Restaurants are often empty and close early. The road is covered with snow. When it melts, cracks and bulges appear. We light the stove of his house using the pages of a textbook of Romanian history. Dogs are either tied up or they roam wild. However, I did once come across a man with an axe in his left hand and a dog on a lead in his right.

I speak English and come from the West. This makes me popular with the girls. Sorrin tells me about the time he spent in Belgium. He stayed in a large house belonging to a surgeon. He wants to know if everyone in Belgium lives like that. An old woman explains to me with complete conviction that the Apocalypse will be before 2018 and that we all have an identification chip in our arm. You see 4x4s on the roads as well as carts. Gabriella and Gheorghe show me, like a souvenir album, pictures of Madeira collected on the internet. Under Communism Bogdan used to eat a banana once a year, around Christmas I learned to play billiards and to cut up a car.  I love borsjtsj, grilled mitch and homemade wine. There is a lake that might be one of the purest in the world. The level of oxygen is exceptionally high. During the winter when one skates over it, it feels like not touching the ice. At Babylon disco bar restaurant, they serve schnitzel accompanied with red wine blended with Coke. There is few shooting training for police officer because they lack of bullets. 

I have met a German married to a young Romanian girl. He asked when Romania will enter the European Union. People greet one another in the village, so I do too. A calf they had named after me died shortly after I left. Catalin has cut his penis into a construction site while spanning a broken window. He stayed a week in hospital. I taught Maso the word ‘good’. After that we exchanged pornography videos on our mobile phones.

Since my last trip the VAT has increased by 5%. Civil servant salaries have been decrease by 25%. Everyone started to smoke. The Securitate forced Claudio to cut his long hair. Winter is almost over. There is less work. The days are short.

I’m in Romania. ‘Noroc’ means both ‘good luck’ and ‘good health’. You say it when you drink a toast and when you leave.

Más información sobre Cédric Van Turtelboom
Texto: Cédric Van Turtelboom

2 comentarios :

Televisores dijo...

Muy buena descripción, este blog me ha parecido estupendo por las publicaciones tan buenas. Un saludo

Pilar dijo...

@Televisores. Gracias por tu comentario y palabras hacia este blog.

Un saludo, Pilar.