Through a visual survey, architect and photographer Ramón Paolini explores the evolution of Caracas (Venezuela). The photographs capture the capital's transformation throughout the past forty years, giving viewers an in depth look at one of Latin America's most tumultuous regions, its urban development, and the socio-political aspects behind it. Most importantly, Paolini illustrates his personal vision for this urban space that builds, destroys, and rebuilds with an astounding tenacity.
Compiling the photos in his book “Caracas. A Double Take" (Caracas. A doble página), Paolini takes the viewer through the Venezuelan capital's transformation over the past four decades.
Through the hundreds of black and white images, he captures the city's architectural as well as the demographic evolution and gives his personal reflections on what its future holds. Paolini explains:
I have tried to document the city throughout the years, trying to decipher its third dimension through its architecture, it's geography and history, and the four centuries that have shaped it; however, it's really only during the last seventy years that the city's modern urban profile has emerged. I've been able to rescue some timeless images from thirty years ago as well as newer images whose subjects, the buildings, attempt to send a message as they stand alone with their stones and bricks, attempting to keep their place among newer buildings of steel and glass
Here, we've compiled a collection of chronological images from Paolini's photographic exploration to give you a glimpse of a city's transformation through the eyes of an architect.
1978 Francisco Fajardo Highway
1980 Francisco Fajardo Highway
1982 El Camarón
1983 "La India"
1983 Botanical Gardens
1984 "Volumen virtual suspendido" by Jesús Rafael Soto, Centro Benaven
1995 Atlantic Building
1998 Central Bank of Venezuela Building
2011 Confinanzas Financial Center (Tower of David)
2011 Galipán Business Center
2012 Parque Cristal Building
Ramón Paolini (Carache, 1949) earned his degree in Architecture in 1973. He has been the director of Cultural Heritage in Venezuela and was UNESCO’s inspector in 2000. "Caracas. A Double Take" is a book co-edited by Archivo Fotografía Urbana and La Fábrica (Spain), as a part of the Fundación alliance that promotes and celebrates Venezuelan photographers on an international scale.