The photographic documentation project A Spiritual Geography of the Highlands is shown as a visual inventory of the spiritual imagery of the South Peruvian Andes.
It doesn’t have the ambition to be a complete record of the mythical and cultural elements of a reality in which shamanism and popular cults cohabit with other concurrent religious systems. The main purpose is to generate reflection in the reader about the importance of the conservation of ancestral cultures and the deep contribution that a different ecosystem of interpretations of reality can offer.
A Spiritual Geography of the Highlands is a project that began in 2016 when the author went to live in the Andes of Cusco, where he had the opportunity to immerse himself in the great cultural wealth that these lands have been able to preserve. Living in the mountains of Cusco means being in continuous contact with an ancestral wisdom, expressed not only in a pre-Inca language such as Quechua, but also through small daily ritual gestures that show a close relationship of affection and respect between the man and his environment. An exemplary symbol of this relationship is the belief in the Apus, the guardian spirits incarnated in the mountains. According to the inhabitants of these lands, the Apus are supernatural entities, true masters and protectors of all existing things and to which the inhabitants show daily respect in the form of different dedicating offerings.
Andean spirituality is a fragmented world of an eminently traditional nature, which is deeply connected with agricultural and pastoral practices. This fragmentation is also reflected in the inventory proposed by the photographer. The intention, therefore, is to invite the viewer to consider the partiality of the project as an intrinsic characteristic of the subject it is documenting; this is justified, on the one hand, by the lack of a coherent narrative within a belief system influenced by other cultures, and on the other ha