Young creative people from Portimão unveil the «Sempre Quis Ser» project at the Cais do Sodré Metro

João Porfírio and Catarina Fernandes are 19 years old and both from Portimão, but they are now studying […]

always wanted to beJoão Porfírio and Catarina Fernandes are 19 years old and are both from Portimão, but are now studying in Lisbon. It was there that these two friends decided to dedicate themselves to the “Sempre Quis Ser” project, an exhibition of black and white photography that can be seen at the Cais do Sodré Metro station, until 28 December.

«This project started about a year ago (the opening day – 25 November – was the day the first photograph of the project was taken) and the idea was to photograph homeless people with their unfulfilled dream! We asked everyone for a professional dream, but there was one, aged 22, who surprised us when he replied “happy”», João Porfírio told Sul Informação.

“That boy didn't want to explain to us why he was on the street, but when he answered our question, he was clear and direct: “happy”», he recalls. «This is what I like to photograph, realities, naked and raw, and I got it with this project!»

João Porfírio, whom many people from Portimão and, in fact, from all over the Barlavento Algarve, will know, when he, still a student at Manuel Teixeira Gomes Secondary School, was the young photo reporter who accompanied the journalist from Jornal do Algarve throughout the entire period. On the other hand, he is now studying photography at ETIC in Lisbon.

John PorphyryJoão started photographing at the age of 15 and it was at that age that he published his first image in Jornal do Algarve: «a photo of the World Rhythmic Gymnastics Championship, at Portimão Arena, I will never forget!».

Catarina Fernandes, also 19, is studying scenography at Chapitô. «We are longtime friends and we are “crazy” and we have several projects in mind together!», says João, excited. This set of 10 photographs in black and white, from the project ««Sempre Quis Ser», is just the first of many, he guarantees.

And how did the idea of ​​photographing the homeless and their dreams come about? “In conversation with a homeless man, he told us: “I always wanted to be a teacher”. We went home thinking about it and we remember to take that idea and look for other people, to know their dreams», explained the young photographer to Sul Informação.

This exhibition is born from the will and commitment of these two young 19-year-old students, wanting to give voice to some of the dreams and expectations that were lost, somewhere in the life of those who, today, find themselves in the condition of homeless or beggar.

And that's how these people, photographed in the streets and alleys of Lisbon, where they live, hold a small slate board where they answer the question «What did you always want to be?»: «teacher», «mason», «architect», « civil engineer', 'computer technician', 'soccer player' or simply 'happy'.

Catarina FernandesGetting to talk to people, for more than a camera in hand, was a lot of work. «Catarina did the communicative part, the contact with the person, as if she were the “journalist”, and I was the reporter and I got these photos! The photographs in the exhibition are all my own, but Catarina has as much merit as I do!».

João Porfírio confesses that the project was, "most of the time, quite difficult" to carry out. But that, he stresses, was even “very good, because, as we like challenges, it was one more to overcome! Nowadays, we pass some of the people we photographed on the street and they talk to us and we exchange a few words! I consider one or two friends!».

And that's how, through a question, a slate and a camera, the project «Sempre Quis Ser» came to life, and is now available for visit until December 28 in one of Lisbon's hot spots. This allowed the authors to fulfill one of the objectives of this project – to bring the exhibition to people, in this case to customers and passersby of the Cais do Sodré station, and lead them to reflect on the phenomenon of homelessness and make them fight for it. your dreams, not allowing your goals to fall by the wayside.

For the realization of this exhibition, the authors had the support of ETIC and Metropolitano de Lisboa, as well as the partnership in terms of publicizing the CASA Association – Center for Support to the Homeless.

The exhibition is free. And will the exhibition ever be shown in the Algarve, the region of origin of the two young creatives? «For now, we have only thought about taking it to Porto». But it will soon be seen.