In the photographer’s own words
“I arrived in Managua, Nicaragua, and was immediately assaulted by sights, smells, and sounds; crushing heat mixed with exhaust fumes; the din and roar of heavy traffic; and the chaos of pedestrians, buses, trucks, bicycles, motorcycles and cars. My eyes were wide open, my every sense attuned to the immediate, though it was impossible to absorb everything. The heat melted into me, the sweet tropical fruit refreshed me, the landscape amazed me, and the people delighted me.
Nicaragua seeped into my skin, sensation by sensation, until my senses became amplified, nearly overwhelmed. This feeling of being overwhelmed by experience is one of the most powerful I have ever felt. I was left with a sense of calm, powerful beauty. Of course, this feeling was not only achieved through the scenery and surroundings, but also through the people I was lucky enough to meet and get to know.
My photos capture but a fraction of my Nicaragua experience; I have tried to preserve a moment in time, a glimpse of culture, or the essence of character and personality in each photograph. Without the people and their welcoming, sincere ways, these would be nothing but pretty pictures. I wanted to capture their spirit and vibrancy and something of how they’ve been shaped by their environment and culture. I will remember forever my Nicaragua experience and, most especially, its people.”
4 Walls Project, Nicaragua
The 4 Walls Project is a small, nonprofit organization whose simple goal is to provide families with the materials and labor to rebuild or finish their homes. The project is based in El Sauce, Nicaragua, a small, rural town (and a Rochester Sister City) where it is common to see large families living in houses with walls made from tarps, rotting wood, or cardboard. Through donations and volunteer efforts, the 4 Walls Project provides bricks, materials, and helping hands so these families can have houses that are safe and secure. Volunteers work alongside local residents digging ditches, mixing cement, and laying brick; in the process they form lasting bonds that become the foundation of a sustainable project.
For more information about the 4 Walls Project, visit www.journeysofsolutions.org or contact:
Journeys of Solutions, Inc.
PO Box 28
Webster, NY 14580-0028
Andrew will be returning to El Sauce in 2011 to build more houses and capture more images.
To view more of his photographs, visit www.nicaragua4walls.shutterfly.com