State of Independence X

While the independence related protests continue in Barcelona, their number and attendance is very much reduced. This is a short set of film images taken at night at a protest in support of the politicians and independence group leaders currently on remand in Madrid following their unilateral declaration of Catalan independence.

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State of Independence IX

More independence movement images from Barcelona. Since the last update, the level of protest activity has subsided significantly, with all the protests shown here organised by Assemblea/Òmnium in support of the independence movement – but with turnouts significantly smaller than in previous weeks.

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State of Independence VII

A further update and set of film images from the ongoing separatist crisis in Catalunya. On Tuesday, Carles Puigdemont refused to clarify whether or not the Catalan government had declared independence. As a result, the central government in Madrid has started proceedings under Article 155 of the Spanish constitution with the aim of restoring a

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State of Independence VI

More film photographs from the continuing independence movement protests here in Barcelona. Following the white protest on Saturday, there has been a subsequent unity march through the city centre, and then a gathering to celebrate what was expected to be a formal declaration of independence for Catalunya. However, the secessionists were bitterly disappointed by President Puigdemont’s actual speech.

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State of Independence V

More protest images from Barcelona as surging nationalism continues to polarise Catalunya and Spain, leading towards ever increasing tension. Shown here are images from street protests against police violence, and a protest calling for dialogue rather than confrontation between the two opposing political factions – one of the few politically neutral responses to the escalating violence and division.

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State of Independence II

A second set of film images of the independence movement protests, this time taken outside of the Universidad de Barcelona. This event was very carefully orchestrated to try to portray Catalunya as if it was an oppressed nation under the control of a distant dictatorship in Madrid. Carnations were distributed as a deliberate reference to the 1975 Carnation Revolution in Portugal. The protest group also openly arranged to print and distribute ballot papers for the planned illegal referendum, openly challenging the Guardia Civil’s confiscation of ballot materials in the last week. Here […]

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State of Independence I

A short set of film photographs taken at various demonstrations and protest points in Barcelona over the last week. These are the result of a proposed “independence” referendum being pushed through by the regional parliament against the wishes of the central government in Madrid. The result is a political disaster, creating ever deeper and more dangerous divides both internally in Catalunya and externally with Spain. So far the protests have largely been very peaceful, typically involving a few tens of thousands of people from diverse backgrounds. While there has been […]

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Encants III – Architecture in Blue

Two short galleries of very different architectural images, taken on a short walk around the area of the Encants market at Glories, Barcelona. The area is undergoing a construction boom at present, with large modern developments for housing of all types, offices, hotels and additional space for schools and universities. Much of this architecture makes a complete break with Barcelona’s historical building styles, adopting a very modern glass-and-steel approach.

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#VolemAcollir: Massive Protests in Support of Refugees in Catalunya

A set of images from #VolemAcollir – an immense protest organised in Barcelona in support of refugees. The main slogan “Prou excuses. Acollim ara” can be translated as “Enough excuses. We welcome now”. This reflects concern that the central Spanish government is not fulfilling its commitments to settling refugees, and also a recent call for Catalunya to provide even more direct support. After enduring months of watching the US and the UK slide into a mire of hard-rightwing xenophobia it is incredibly uplifting to see people here in Catalunya marching in support of […]

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Barcelona: Tourist Go Home

A set of photographs from the Ocupació de les Rambles, Barcelona. This was a citizens protest march which combined a diverse range of groups and issues that affect the lives of ordinary people living in Barcelona today. There were several key issues being protested: the unsustainable level of tourism and its effect on local residents, the cost of property and rents, and forced evictions of people with mortgage arrears. All of these are combining to destroy the quality of life of people living in the city, and indications are that […]

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Barcelona: Manteros, Tourists and Luxury Yachts

There are few more poignant symbols of the problems in Barcelona than photographs taken around the newly redeveloped harbour area between Port Vell and Barceloneta. Here, tourists newly disembarked from cruise ships or disgorged from the flood of incoming flights to El Prat walk past rows and rows of “manteros” – illegal immigrants selling fake designer sunglasses, handbags, shoes, hats and numerous other dubious goods. In the background is an exclusive private marina where multi-millionaires dock their luxury yachts. The blankets (mantas) are usually linked to ropes attached at each corner, so […]

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Week 16 :: Stop

Five loosely connected images taken around the centre of Barcelona. The lead image shows an illegal protest against the “Ley Mordaza” (gagging  law) – more officially and misleadingly titled as the “Ley Orgánica de Protección de la Seguridad Ciudadana” (2015).

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Week 1 :: Shadows

Secrets and Lies - Occupation of our home over Christmas

One benefit of being a street photographer is that creating a photographic record of criminal activity is an instinctive reaction, even if most of the photographs for legal reasons can not be published immediately. These images have been deliberately selected from a few of the more abstract captures this week – caused by an occasional flash misfire or from several attempts to destroy the camera (as in the lead image). The photographs were processed in the frustratingly buggy Capture One Pro 9, and have no content changes or effects other than to obscure facial features in one image below.

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