© 2016 by Francisco Rojas.

The Cartonera

In 2011, the topic for St Catherine's Show was: "Refugee".

The Cartonera (Slang word that refers to a person who grabs cardboard from the street and sells it). After the 2001 economic and political crash in Argentina, unemployed and homeless people were in the streets picking up cardboard to sell it and earn some money. During that time it was a kind of “temporary job” for a large part of  Argentinian society.

 

In 2011, during my studies at Esmod Berlin, I looked for a muse to create an outfit for St Catherine´s show. While I was doing some research, I discovered that people do the same in other parts of the world. It wasn’t a local issue; it was an international manner of living for thousands of people around the earth.

 

To create this outfit, I visited a flea market and I bought many secondhand curtains in different brown tones. I cut the curtains in to rectangles and sewed each of them one beside the other on different layers, as you can see on the graphics named "The Cartonera Workmanship.

 

With this outfit, I wanted to show the lifestyle of many people around the globe and describe  how they survive day by day collecting cardboard and papers.

Sometimes luxury hides the most neglected part of a country where the only protagonists are disadvantaged people.