“I am I and my circumstance, and, if I do not save it, I do not save myself.”
— José Ortega y Gasset, Meditations on Quixote
Spanish artist Oscar Parasiego illustrates the transformation of cultural identity in his ongoing series Diaspora. Inspired from his own move to the UK, Parasiego uses the notion of “photography as truth” to blur the complex osmosis of the many thousands of immigrants looking for a better life abroad. Each portrait is altered to be a silhouetted reflection of the environment around them, the person present but unknown when thrust into the alien world of a different country. For many immigrants seeking opportunity away from home, what begins as a practice of assimilation and cultural ease quickly becomes an evolution of personal identity. The former self transfigures anew, a stranger to both their past and present, uncertain how to hold on while moving forward in the foreign landscape before them.