Famed photojournalist Aprilia Pegaso has recently returned from jungles of the Amazon, documenting declining indigenous tribes along the Amazon River. The photos are fascinating, but more critically, Pegaso smells terrible.
Pegaso spent three months in the jungle, living and photographing the native tribes as they went about their normal days. The natives wore their traditional, thin, well-breathing garments, appropriate for the hot, steamy climate. They also bathed regularly in the Amazon with native soaps. But Pegaso was allergic to the soaps, and brought synthetic hiking clothes which did ok for the first couple of days, but afterward took on a stench that would not leave.
Pegaso’s work involves documenting how modern life infiltrates even the most remote cultures in the world and her style involves being as unobtrusive and invisible as possible to her subjects. But that proved to be hard to harder to do as the weeks went by and Pegaso’s olfactory funk got worse and worse. At the end of her time in the Amazon, Pegaso was using a 300mm telephoto while waist deep in the river, but she could still be smelled from up to thirty yards away.
The trip was scheduled for six months, but after three months the natives kicked out the foul-smelling Westerner. Tribal leader James River said, “She was fine at first and we enjoyed her company. The kids, especially, liked to play with her long blonde hair. But after a while, we noticed some really bad body odor that just got worse as time went by. It is not our tradition, but we would light incense during our ceremonies in the hope that it would overpower the smell but they failed. She tried to be quiet and out of the way as she took photos, but even if we could not see her, we could smell her. If the rest of the modern world smells as bad as Pegaso, then maybe we don’t want to join.”
Pegaso’s show, “The Vanishing Tribes of the Amazon River” is scheduled to appear at the Downtown Gallery, as soon as they can confirm that Pegaso has taken a shower.