We take those things that give us meaning for granted; we believe they will be there forever. We tend to think those who are our beacon, our guide, our home and safe place, our sofa-and-blanket nights, will never leave our side. We assume we will always have a hug, a few laughs with the occasional lousy TV film, homecooked dinners, good advice and endless love when needed. But one day, suddenly, they are no longer there. And everything changes. And missing them becomes your new routine. You have to do something with all that pain.
Ángeles Isidora Zabalo passed away in 2022 after a life full of hardship, struggle, smiles, and humility. Sixty-three years of trying not to draw attention to herself, insecurities, hard work and generosity the size of all the seas in the world. She gave when she had none and helped when she had no time for herself; she cared for the elderly, collected clothes and food for refugees, assembled first aid items for the homeless and engaged with the community with her serene look, with a humanity that could not hide her timid nature. Pieza Madre is a series of photographs and concepts created by her son, Andoni Beristain, whose hands, which hold the camera, are a copy of hers.
Ángeles left suddenly, without leaving a manual to understand how to go on without her. From her memory, from her life, from her courage despite everything and from her tireless sense of humour, Pieza Madre is born. This is an exploration of the exterior, a need to fill a void, tell a story, and honour a woman, using yellow, the colour of bad luck but also joy, sun and happiness, as a motto.
Each individual in this world has their way of opening up; some people do it through writing, others through crying, others sing, others suffer in silence, others don’t know how to do it, and Andoni Beristain has done it through 63 photographs, one for each year that his mother passed through this strange planet, compiling a unique and personal work and fulfilling the dream of publishing it. Ángeles has given Andoni this last gift, which is dedicated to her.
Assistants Tomás Beristain
Pierpaolo Lampitelli Art Direction and photography Andoni Beristain