(Madrid, Spain. 2015 – 2016)
Every day, a group of between fifteen to twenty people gather sacredly at the Puerta del Sol, in the heart of Madrid. They are not tourists from a city tour, neither locals expecting to meet some friends. Nor are they undercover cops.
They are immigrants from South America, mostly Peruvians, Bolivians and Ecuadorians trying to earn their life masquerading themselves as animated characters from pop culture.
Trying to subsist collecting tips from tourists and children who want to be portrayed with them.
Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh or Mario Bros are already part of the urban landscape of downtown Madrid. They work in shifts of up to 12 hours, wandering from side to side, trying to make a living, overcoming the cold winter and the scorching summer heat.
They are the anonymous latinos. Faceless immigrants. Witnesses and participants of a moment in the memory of strangers. A brief bond, inspired by that collective imagination that brings us back to memories of childhood and joy. It is not Disneyland, nor an amusement park. They are South Americans in Madrid, reliving animated fantasies of yesterday and today. In exchange for a coin. To survive with no face, nor name.