“Minas Gerais: In the backlands paths” is a project based in Guimarães Rosa journey with 8 boiadeiros (brazilian native cowboys) along 150 miles in 1952, and inspired by his most acclaimed book “Devil to Pay in the Backlands” (Grande Sertão: Veredas) published in 1956. The idea was not artificially recreating the universe of sertão, and neither portrait their people in traditional costumes to make a misleading impression of past on contemporaneity.
Unfortunately the environment was deeply degraded, destructing not only its ecosystem, but extinguishing wildlife and impacting locals communities causing almost irreversible damage in society and nature. The irresponsibly exploitation of natural resources is also extinguishing local biodiversity leading to pastures for cattle, agribusiness, eucalyptus plantation, hydroelectric and tailings dam. The native society is loosing its identity and pride, trying to find new perspectives in big cities or larger near cities causing rural exodus. All these problems I really wasn’t aware awakened a feeling of extreme sadness inside me, yet I couldn’t help to feel happy to meet these people and hear their histories. I feel I’m in a road of understanding myself better as a person after this journey, and I hope these pictures can evoke the warmth and kindness of all the people I happily met in Minas Gerais, Brazil.