La Madrileña
Project info

La Madrilena is series of manipulated self portraits taken on the streets of Madrid.

Being a foreigner in a new city, I started documenting the city's dwellers whilst they themselves observed their own city.

According to the law in Spain, “the taking, reproducing or publishing of the image of a person captured by photography means in places or moments of private life or outside these” is considered to be an “illegal intromission in private life”.

As I got to know the city's streets, buildings and its people to a greater degree, I began to feel more at home and more at one with the city. As the number of photos of my subjects grew, so did my love for my new city. The narrow cobbled streets, the long wide avenues and public plazas all became my playground, the buildings with their balconies of various architectural styles became my canvas and the people who occupied them, became my subjects.

As a result of adhering to the Spanish law, what started off as being an observation of the city's dwellers, my subjects began to take on a greater and more personal role. They started to truly reflect my life in this new city, these were no longer portraits of a city, but had now became portraits of a new resident, Myself ! In order to protect the identity of those photographed, all faces have been replaced with those of my own self portraits.

Louise O'Gorman.

If I die,
leave the balcony open.

The little boy is eating oranges.
(From my balcony I can see him.)

The reaper is harvesting the wheat.
(From my balcony I can hear him.)

If I die,
leave the balcony open!

- Farewell by Federico Garcia Lorca.