Diego Sagastume Guatemala City, Guatemala
Born in Guatemala City in 1991. Lives and works in Guatemala City. Self-taught artist and coder, his work examines the city as a stage in which, through the confluence of multiple agents, different tangible and intangible phenomena arise as well as the cycle of mutual transformation between an individual and its surroundings.
Diego Sagastume was chosen by photographer Czar Kristoff
Diego Sagastume is the 24th and final artist in link number 2 (red)
Laatikkomo’s interview with Diego Sagastume, March 18th, 2019.
L: Where are you from? What cities, and/or countries have you lived in – or what places have influenced you?
DS: I’m from Guatemala City and I’ve been living here my whole life. This city holds the most significance and influence both in my upbringing and mindset and I experience it by walking around a few hours almost every day. Walking plays an important role in my process of gathering images, allowing me to go through an always renewed stream of situations and random encounters.
L: What is your earliest memory of photography?
DS: Photography became relevant for me around 2007. My first camera was a Canon S5 IS and I really liked to play with its macro capabilities and powerful zoom. I used to take it to my grandmother’s garden to photograph flowers in macro mode resulting in compositions of color spectra; I could say those were my first abstract images.
L: In terms of technique, you do not limit yourself to working in photography, but you use various techniques and materials to produce a work focused on concept. Could you tell us a little bit about what goes into your creative process; idea, technique, production?
DS: I like the idea of photography as a way of sampling reality or as a mechanism to isolate particular phenomena. I see my photos as sketches for something else outside photography, mostly sculpture. That’s what I like about unframed prints on Dibond or aluminum, it becomes more of an object resembling a fragment of reality than just a representation of it through a regular photo.
L: Geometry plays a strong role in your work. Are you looking for a specific pattern or do these forms jump out at you?
DS: A bit of both. These forms are just happening and I think they are somehow connected and that’s the consequence of something beyond my control. All in all, I’m interested in portraying very particular images with specific traits and patterns; I consider the result of that deliberation a yearn to depict an idealized version of things.
L: Your photographs, including videos, are calm observations that hold a quiet humour. What qualities do you strive towards? And in general, what makes an image appealing to you?
DS: Balance is something I strive towards. Many of my images are taken on a particular moment in which everything that’s happening around seems to pause briefly. Cities can be very chaotic places and my photos propose an alternate, more serene version of them. Also, I try to avoid blue skies as much as I can because I find them distracting; I like to portray things in the most innocuous possible way.
L: In your biography you mention that besides being a photographer, you are also a coder. What qualities from coding do you take into your photography?
DS: I’m always trying to figure out the underlying variables and processes that give shape to a particular element or situation, like doing a reverse engineering.
L: Could you list five or more words related to the work you are showing in Laatikkomo?
Thank you so much Diego!!!