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Book portrays Madrid’s cultural melting pot

12 July 2005

MADRID — A new book portrays in photographs and words how Madrid has become a melting pot for people from 100 nations.

Photographers and journalists behind the project presented their book, ‘Universo Mestizo’ (Mixed Universe) portraying immigrants to Spain.

“They (the immigrants) make up the new profile of the city. They are bankers, artists, athletes, scientists, adventurers. With and without residence papers,” said Daniel Lozano, a journalist who contributed to the book.

“Some of the people depicted were hard to find,” he told EFE.

Among the 150 immigrants portrayed are an Iranian-born emergency medical worker and a Moroccan who rushed to help provide first aid to victims of the 11 March, 2004 terrorist bombings of Madrid commuter trains in which 191 people were killed.

Lozano paid tribute to what called the close teamwork among contributing photographers Francis Tsang, Sofia Moro, Alfredo Caliz, Juan Ramon Puyol, Jesús Ubera, Carma Casula and Diego Lopez.

Along with a photograph of each subject, the book has text explaining his or her background, their concerns, opinions and dreams.

In his prologue, Peruvian-born writer Mario Vargas Llosa, who resides principally in Spain, hails “the new madrileños”.

“Madrid now is, like New York, London or Berlin, a city of the 21st century, in whose streets and neighbourhoods the entire world is refracted,” he wrote.

The exhibition at Madrid’s Circulo de Bellas Artes which accompanies the book is funded by the Spanish-Argentine oil company Repsol-YPF and runs until 18 September.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news