About the artworkIn the portrait series 'Cocani' Diego Diego Echevers Torrez pays tribute to the Aymara coca merchants - known as Cocani, who settled in the Bolivian city Oruro at the time when the region thrived on silver and tin mining. The region, its people and local mining industry gave rise to a rich carnival tradition - symbolic of the local culture - still celebrated today. Diego Echevers Torrez uses analogue techniques and processes in all his work. In the 'Cocani' project there is an additional particular thematic connection between the subject of the series and the technique and processes used to produce prints. The silver nitrate used for the development of the negatives is locally sourced and relates to the local history of silver mining.
Bolivian photographer Diego Echevers Torrez was born in Chochabamba, Bolivia in 1979. Driven by a need to earn money, he first came to photography in 1997 in connection with student jobs at university.
Diego Echevers Torrez's chosen medium is analogue photography and he uses mostly medium format and large format cameras. The process nature of analogue photography has become an important part of the creative hand crafted way of how he works - even including some of the base materials and chemicals. Economic conditions and restrictions in Bolivia have forced him to produce some of the chemicals and material used in his work himself - something he now appreciates as integral part of the overall creative process.