André França
Nightswimming



I was born in the small town of Canavieiras in southern Bahia (Brazil), about 600 km from Salvador. I lived there until I was 14. Itís a seaside town, and the experience of the sea, throughout my childhood, marked me deeply. Almost every Sunday, my parents, my sister and I would go to the beach, which was not a simple undertaking: to get to the beach we had to cross a wide river in a small canoe, and then walk about one kilometer in the sand. Then we would get to a deserted beach, with no houses, no buildings and no electricity. That was my beach.

About five years after I left Canavieiras (at 14, to study in Salvador), my parents built a house on the beach; by then, there was already a bridge connecting the town to the beach, and also a simple dirt road. Our new house was right on the sea.

The Nightswimming series was developed in 2008. I made all the individual photos in one night, after a dinner with my family at the beach house. The process of editing the series, however, assembling the triptychs, took several months. I aimed, in these triple images, to recreate some of the seaís eternal dynamic. But, in stitching the images, I was also sewing myself, my history, my relationship with the sea, with my family and with the successive returns to my homeland.

[See the photographs]