Friday, August 21, 2009

Islamic School, Dakar, Senegal, 2006

We disagree in the street for a few minutes, my guides and I. They tell me we must move on, people are talking. I tell them that the people in front of us want us to stay, to make their pictures. A man from the building behind us walks out and has a talk with one of the guides, he invites us into the building.

It happens to be an Islamic school. The negotiations begin and, as with the other schools, the people in charge want to see some form of payment before portraits are made. I remind them that my photography is made without monetary payment and I also remind them that they invited us into the school.

They talk it over for a few minutes and then decide to allow us to do our work. They are quite kind, show us the classrooms, show us the desks that are being made by hand in a courtyard, show us the plans for expansion and for growth.

We quickly arrange a place inside the courtyard, there is a white wall and the sun is setting quickly behind the wall of the courtyard. Portraits are made and made quickly. From a disagreement in the street to a quiet place inside a building, one never knows what will happen next.