Archives: Subway Zen

 In 2005, I started this trip. It was not supposed to be a book, an exhibition, nothing...I just took a picture after the other...I can't condense how important has been, it simply changed everything..

Published in 2020.

subway Zen book Gabriele Lopez

I started to take these photographs casually, in those endless hours spent traveling back and forth during my 9 to 5 years…Like millions of other people, I have done this kind of life for years.

Subway can be an outstanding teather of human life situations if we’re open to different possibilities. I have taken photographs since 2005 on a daily basis in every subway and today is more common to observe 90% of passengers hiding and lost observing a smartphone screen rather than watching around and interacting.

In the underground you end up losing your accurately built identity when you are surrounded by the crowd. You may be a manager or a street sweeper and it doesn’t makes any difference. Your space and your privacy are revisited and even space for breathing is not for granted. Our ancient sense of smell faces many strangers.

Your status is deleted, everyone can’t wait to reach surface again.

Eye games, meetings, distance, earphones, books and the damn smartphone become defense weapons and stories of people I can only imagine that for some stops or dozen minutes live together between fascination and indifference shades. Someone will steal some extra minute of sleep, someone will get lost out of the window and someone will do everything except just wait. Some will day/night dreaming.

A couple hold hands to stay together in the madness of disorder. Same madness I was into in those years.

A connection is born.

My little camera helps me to face and understand all this, teaches me to look and see where it’s supposed there’s nothing to see and record and notice things I would lose if without a camera and my obsession for pictures. Translator, mask, protection.

This was my train and my ride.