She has obtained spectacular and unanimous recognition worldwide with a first jubilant series that narrates the adventure of a group of African astronauts. This fiction has won over both big museums and children and small and big collectors. Her self-published book constitutes a small treasure for all those who love photography, history and elegance in the broadest meaning of the word. At festivals, in exhibition halls and portfolio publications, her astronauts have turned into a species of contemporary icons. A good opportunity, in terms of out and out freedom, for the ex-press photographer to pick up her tools again and get back on the streets to photograph New York. That might seem somewhat commonplace as a first impression except that, her head buzzing with personal passions, mythologies, cinema and images, she set off to track down her film, West Side Story. Worst of all she found it again on Manhattan’s street corners, without setting up stage designs and just by roaming around, convinced that the real is a carrier of fiction –unless the real simply is a fiction. She registered the colours of the street, ran into people, dramas, tensions and lights. Of course, it all concludes as does any film worth the name, with a single word: End.
Born in 1975 in Alicante, Spain, she lives and works in London. De Middel has developed personal projects that have been awarded and exhibited on several occasions (Rencontres d´Arles, Deutsche Börse Prize and the ICP Infinity Award in New York, among others). Her book The Afronauts is a best seller in the field of photography. Her work makes us question the language and veracity of the photograph as document, and plays with reconstructions and archetypes that blur the boundary between reality and fiction.