Camilo’s doctoral dissertation engages a critical reflection on what he calls an “imaged community” (communauté imagée) in Sarcelles, a French marginalized city. Through a lengthy and immersive visual ethnography, his research shows the power of visual practices in the social and cultural definition of urban phenomena.
Camilo’s work provides a thoughtful, engaged and sophisticated explication of method, perspective and the pragmatics of photographic ethnography. The committee thought that Camilo surpassed the normal limitations and expectations for a dissertation by examining—in exquisite detail—the multiple contexts in which people’s “stories” are created and recreated, viewed, listened to and understood by the researcher/photographer, the participants, the community, and the larger world.
Sarcelles Under the Snow
“I made this photograph on February 2nd, 2018, as part of a visual ethnography for my doctoral research. This latter engages a critical reflection on what I called an “imaged community” (communauté imagée) in Sarcelles, a marginalized French city to the north of Paris. Based on long-term fieldwork (2015-2018) and an extensive body of ethnographic and photographic work, my research showed the role of images in the visual construction of Sarcelles as one of the most iconic banlieues in France. By studying the processes of making, sharing, and exhibiting images, my dissertation explored the sensitive foundations of visual experiences in urban settings. Through a long and immersive visual ethnography, my research evidences the power of visual practices…”