This series proposes a reflection on conflict between our inner references and exterior influences, the baggage we pick up as we grow up. Our ego is built by so many emotional patterns and cultural influences that it becomes hard to identify ourselves with anything other than our profession, social circles, addictions and habits.

This group of superfluous information creates an easy answer to qualify ourselves when confronted by anyone, but doesn't take us much further in our existential search.

I believe there is an identity deeper than this one, something we can call our essence. We can see it in small children, whose personality we already recognize since very early, before being influenced or repressed by family and society.

But as we grow up we detach ourselves from this spontaneity. And this distance, as our ego and our essence move in different directions, can measure our neurosis. As grown ups we become functional neurotics, citizens absolutely capable of fulfilling our duties, yet incapable of fulfilling ourselves. And what is worse, we become identified with this.

How can anyone connect to another if he's not truly connected to himself? We live in big cities bumping into strangers absolutely detached from the reality of the one next to us. But as we reconnect with ourselves and approach our spontaneity we are no longer lost in the city. There is no need for an external reference, and can we stop looking for solutions and answers on the streets. We stop being anonymous and start recognizing and completing ourselves, so we can finally recognize the other.

— Calé

Editor's note: We first discovered Calé's work at the Photovisa Festival in Krasnodar, Russia, and then met him in person and discovered even more great work during portfolio reviews at LensCulture FotoFest Paris 2013.