Resistance - Forest Ruins


Karanga Plaza • 24 May - 14 June

24 hrs / 7 days
Karanga Plaza, Viaduct Harbour
Rafael Vilela

Auckland Festival of Photography exclusive presentation of Brazilian photojournalist, Rafael Vilela as part of the 2023 Festival theme resistance [ātete]. 

The tiny territory that is home to the indigenous Guarani Mbyá people lies at the very north of the Brazilian metropolis of São Paulo. Vilela has been engaged with the indigenous movement in Brazil for around ten years. This explains the closeness and intimacy seen in many of the pictures in his Forest Ruins series: it is not limited to striking motifs capturing Mbyá’s struggle, but also shows everyday life and rituals on the reservation.

Born in São Paulo, Brazil, in 1989, the independent photographer concentrates on documenting economic and climate crises in his homeland. In 2013 he was one of the founders of Mídia NINJA, a journalist and activist collective dedicated to reporting on the indigenous people’s struggle for their land and for social justice. Vilela’s work has been published in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Intercept, Vice and National Geographic, among others. This series was shortlisted for the 2022 Leica Oskar Barnack Award.

Presentation on outdoor lightboxes, supported by Auckland Council City Centre Activation.

From the series 'Forest Ruins'

Rafael Vilela, from the series Forest Ruins

From the series 'Forest Ruins'

Rafael Vilela, from the series Forest Ruins

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