In “Camila,” Veronika Marquez multiplies herself into two beings, which are parts of her, and makes them coexist in a single space.
From Veronika: I worked as a prostitute from a very young age; it wasn't the only thing I did, but without being completely conscious of it, my life revolved around it. Leaving my past behind, I became a photographer, as if my previous life had never existed. But it was photography that led me to search for my lost identity. In my capacity as a photographer that I am now, I knew that I had a story to tell.
I worked with my other life, with this other "me." Coming and going through time were thousands of questions and the occasional answer; I re-lived my story from the very beginnings when I was 16 years old, and asked myself why I had done it. Months passed and “Camila,” my old nom de guerre, resurged from the past. The past and present together would "naturally" share the same space. In my photographs, I represent what I am and what I was before.
Now we were two in the photographs and both of us were very much alive. Being there together, as if we were friends – and we were friends – today, at my place, in Madrid or in Montevideo, made it feel as if all this time had served to find and to accept us.
I search for the framing, use a 50mm lens to avoid deformations and mount the camera on a tripod. I measure the light where I imagine my girls would be. I had previously made performance photography, and had used in my photographs both self-performance and self-portrait. I placed myself as the person that I am today, Verónica, and then as Camila. Same scene, same person, with past and present, I combine them with Photoshop in order to obtain the final idea.
Representing Camila again, myself in another time, has allowed me to see with clarity that we are representations; a sum of characters that, either consciously or unconsciously, we are continuously choosing in order to define ourselves as people.
An intense year of self portraits, each picture evoking the past and the present even more, led me beyond the still image to the auto-video: "Montevideo" is a continuation of the Camila work. It is double self-portrait work, where I play myself and simultaneously my characters. Both are part of my own life. In this double self-portrait, they are more relaxed while at the same time I intend to show Montevideo, my city. With "Santoral del Sábado" - a poem by the Mexican writer Jaime Sabines, I pay tribute to my old profession.
Camila is a featured multimedia piece on DEVELOP Tube. DEVELOP Tube is an educational resource which features multimedia, interviews, lectures & films about photojournalism, documentary & fine art photography. DEVELOP Tube: Photography to Watch