Muniz questions the nature and traditions of visual representation by ingeniously using unlikely materials to "draw" the subjects of his conventional gelatin-silver prints. He begins by making a Polaroid photograph. Using the Polaroid as a reference, he draws its subject in chocolate syrup, dirt, or sugar, and photographs the result. His "Sugar Children" series consists of photographs of drawings he made in sugar of children whose parents and grandparents have worked on the sugar plantation on the island of Saint Kitts. Our habitual responses are short-circuited by these unusual portraits.
Valentine, The Fastest. From "The Sugar Children Series." 1996.
Gelatin-silver print. 20 x 16". Courtesy Wooster Gardens, New York.