‘Salt of the Earth’ : Iconic Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado.
This movie had me thinking that the way we see the world and others come from our upbringing and living experience. In this piece, Salgado’s work is brilliantly depicted from a storyteller approach. He, himself is the storyteller who gave the audience pictures of what each and every scenic photograph means. Salgado’s photos capture essence, tragedy, and atrocities, and what he saw changed him. When he returned to Brazil, he wanted to see the land, so he traveled for six months photographing whatever he saw. He captured infant mortality in the northeast of Brazil. He asserts, “it’s believed that unbaptized children have no rights to go to heaven. They stay in a region between both worlds, called limbo. Children buried with their eyes closed were baptized.” If their eyes were open, they were searching for eternity.
Salgado passion took him to Africa, where he photographed the genocidal killings in Rwanda and the Congo in the 1990s. His social photography works touches on social class issues in Brazil. These social class issues stretch from landless peasants to families who would have to rent a coffin to buried their dead child. In Rwanda and the Congo, his work touched on injustices in both nations and witnessed the human condition. More than that, this film rekindled Salgado’s love for photography, following in his latest influential work, “Genesis,” for which he contributed close to a decade taking photos of the physical world.
Those memories, like all of Salgado’s production, are brilliant, but what makes “The Salt of the Earth” so unique are the well-examine expressions that go along with the tales.This film shows the conflict of human personalities, torn by egos and beliefs systems, which is bestowed in Salgado’s portraits. After watching this film, one would come to the conclusion that what drives Salgado and made him continued to leave his family for months at a time to photographed the impasse of others, is rooted in his curiosity of understanding oneself and his relations with the world.This movie question human’s ethics. What is it that drives us in doing good or evil? What’s social classism? What bonds us to see the world from a different perspective than others? These questions could only be answered when we figured out how to live.