Clases, Paraguay 2003-2013

Jorge Saenz

"Classes, Paraguay 2003-2013"

( serie of 20 pictures, from a total essay of 70)

The impossible “taxonomy” for Attempting to explain how we are divided socially

What new ways of ordering our collective everyday life do we need to invent in order to classify the layers of our society? With this photo essay Classes, Jorge Saenz, an Argentinian photographer living in Paraguay, offers a series of human gestures relating to the differences of our social structures.

The complete essay is a collection of 70 pictures taken in the past ten years: Paraguayan scenes whose connecting thread seems the presence of money or food, elementary items in life. There are contrasts and similarities in the images, which juxtapose and bring together the symbols that separate us socially.

“An impossible taxonomy, incapable of logically classifying material that is elusive, That does not fit into any system” wrote art historian Ticio Escobar, then minister of culture of Paraguay, about the essay Classes.

Jorge Saenz was born in Argentina, but his family is Paraguayan. Has been living in Asuncion since 1989, where he works as correspondent for The Associated Press. He has published seven books of photo essays, some of them are landmarks of Latin America photography, such as “Rompan Filas”(Broken Ranks) about obligatory military service in this country (

He is dedicated to understanding the society in which he lives by means of photography. He is also founder and Director of “El Ojo Salvaje” (The Wild Eye) a collective of artists that organize an international biannual photo festival. (

{{ readMoreButton }}

  • Poor farmers protest, Asuncion, Paraguay, March 24, 2009.

  • In this Nov. 13, 2012 photo, a farmer walks behind black flags representing eleven landless farmers killed in "Yvy Pyta" settlement, near Curuguaty city, Paraguay, Tuesday. Nov. 13, 2012. Eleven landless farmers and 6 police officers were killed as consequence of the violent land dispute in at Marina Cue when police were trying to evict about 150 farmers from the reserve on June 15, 2012.

  • Independence Day Parade, Asuncion, Paraguay, May 14, 2013.

  • A Chamacoco ethnic group worker, left, hold a mechanic cart under the view of two Mennonite foreman in a milk industry in Filadelfia, Chaco Region of Paraguay.

  • Inmate of the Paraguay's Tacumbu jail Julian Villar,47 sews his lips and eyelids and starts a hunger strike in protest for his freedom and celerity in his legal process in the outskirts of Asuncion,Paraguay on Wednesday, Set. 24, 2003.

  • The presidential chair sits empty before the start of a news conference by Paraguay's new President Federico Franco at the presidential palace in Asuncion, Paraguay, Saturday, June 23, 2012. Former President Fernando Lugo's ouster by lawmakers on Friday has been widely condemned in Latin America as Franco is promising to honor foreign commitments and reach out to Latin American leaders to try to keep his country from becoming a regional pariah.

  • Ache indigenous leader Ceferino Kregi holds aloft the skull of an Ache child captured 114 years ago in the jungles of Paraguay, in Ypetimi, about 300 kilometers southeast of Asuncion, Friday, June 11, 2010. Preserved at a museum in Argentina, the bones of the boy and another Ache, woman whose indigenous name was Kryygi, were returned by Argentine authorities to their ancient community in an act of historical reparation to the Ache tribe. The Ache people, who suffered abuses from the conquest period well into the 20th century, had interested anthropologists due their distinctive morphological aspects such as white skin, light eyes and hair color.

  • Ciro Rodriguez, 59, rests in a bed of the Social Security Hospital in Asuncion, Paraguay on Monday, May 24, 2004 with his feet and hands nailed by himself with 8-inch steel nails in protest against the governement, because of restrictions to his retirement social benefits.

  • High class party at Sheraton hotel, Asuncion, Paraguay, Sept. 29, 2010.

  • Patients wait the lunch at Psychiatric Hospital, Asuncion, Paraguay, May 30 , 2013.

  • Sweet time at high class party, Asuncion, Paraguay, April 15, 2012.

  • High class party, Asuncion, Paraguay, June 24, 2012.

  • A homeless man sleeps at Pantheon back wall, Asuncion, Paraguay, Feb. 16, 2009.

  • Eviction of homelses people, Asuncion, Paraguay, Dec. 6, 2011.

  • A three grows at the top of a chimney of an abandoned factory in Luque, Paraguay, October 2, 2011. (Jorge Saenz)

  • Recycling workers drives a horse-cart by a residential town of Asuncion, Paraguay, June 6, 2012. (Jorge Saenz)

  • An Ache indigenous man participates of a burial ceremony at Ypetimi, Paraguay, June 1, 2010.

  • In this Nov. 7, 2012 photo, Juana Evangelista Martinez, 42, poses for a portrait with her sons, Eulalio, 5, resting on her lap, Christian, 10, in window left, Gabriel, 10, middle row left, Ricardo, 12, in window right, Arnaldo, 9, second from right, and Fabio, 8, right, in the Yvy Pyta settlement near Curuguaty, Paraguay. Martinez 's husband, Arnaldo Ruiz Diaz, was killed during the “Massacre of Curuguaty” on June 15 when negotiations between farmers occupying a rich politician's land ended with a barrage of bullets that killed 11 farmers and 6 police officers.

  • Youths and children fight for banknotes during "Natividad de Maria" celebrations at Guarambare city church, Paraguay, Sept. 7, 2012. Catholic people that believe have received a favor from Maria Virgin used to throw banknotes from church's balcony to children placed down as a form of return the favor to the Virgin. This custom exists since hundreds of years.

  • Cerro Moroti, Paraguay, April 17, 2010