Andrés Galeano transforms discarded snapshots into unexpected compositions that illuminate the poetic possibilities of everyday life. Collecting photographs from flea markets and second-hand shops, Galeano searches for images that are simple yet suggestive of greater meaning, arranging them into collages that highlight previously unrealized ideas and narratives. “My little gesture is to listen to the language of every image.... I use them more as abstract objects, focusing on composition and the latent meanings of the photos,” he says.
In one work from his Unknown Photographers series, a couple embraces before a dartboard that hangs on the wall behind them; the photograph sits atop another in which the sun is setting behind a range of mountains. The circular dartboard mirrors the form of the descending sun while functioning as a visual metaphor for the couple’s focus on each other. In another, the artist arranges several photographs of rainbows so that the arcs connect in a continuous oval, an unending stripe that transcends the settings and physical boundaries of the individual photographs.
Through such juxtapositions and parallels, the artist elicits a sense of synchronicity and surprise. As he draws from a vast informal archive of other peoples’ unwanted photographs, he finds connections that emphasize the continuity among strangers’ experiences and their visual records of them.