South Bronx Family Album

rf_port1-3Cuadritos de Ayer / Cuadritos Perverso is a provocative look at how photography is used to fetishize a marginalize culture in general and that of the South Bronx in particular.

It is an attempt to reclaim the content of our past in a moment of history that seeks to separate it from context, reducing it to abstract meaning, separating the life contained within from their humanity.

In a time of growing visual distractions and digital noise, it is an attempt to push the viewer to look at the photographs beyond the constraints of the perverse frame on the screen or as they hang on the wall, and see them as they are simply displayed in our homes on el bureau.  To look past the frame and into the time that they were created and maybe seek a deeper connection.

It is a reminder of how when outsiders view them, they are simply prizes to be hung on the wall, but to us, they are family photos full of deep personal meaning that connects us with our past. They are personal possessions, those moments frozen in time, for those of us who lived through the fire years. They are not an abstract concept, politely discussed in a gallery or museum over wine and cheese.

They are photos of the neighbor’s daughter, dancing in the street, who inexplicably dies a few months later plunging a neighborhood into mourning. It’s those smiling faces, those kooky moments with friends who are no longer here with us. It’s how a government agency takes away one’s humanity by simply making you wait while sitting in a chair. It’s that family desperately struggling to stay together when they just lost everything.

They are photos of our friends, lovers, family and our community.

This is our family photo album.

Ricky Flores
November 1, 2014

Walked pass a school yard today. The children, they must have been a bunch of 4th graders, were walk

Walked pass a school yard today. The children, they must have been a bunch of 4th graders, were walking around a small track counter clockwise. I couldn’t shake the thought that the yard looked like a prison. Why couldn’t they run and play as their hearts desired? What is this world that we have created for them?

Ana Luisa Flores

When did you break? At what point did the promise of youth fade into the darkest regions of your mind?  When did life start grinding you down?  Was it when you saw me?  Was it when the love of your life died?  You spoke of no other, although there were a few.  All I can remember is moments like this, one more indignity, one more crushing moment in a endless string of them.  It must have seemed easier to face it by letting it consume you and blaming it on someone that no one else could see but you.  Better to howl in defiance in the full light of day knowing there was no way out for you.  All I could do was watch as you slowly turned away into the darkness, alone. I left you alone.  Dec. 25, 2011 ( Photo by Ricky Flores )

The Last Picture I Take

photo by Ricky Flores Photography

This summer was a bad one for me.

I started experiencing chest, jaws and arm pains which resulted in me getting three stents placed into my heart to open up severely blocked arteries.

While laying in my hospital bed starting at the depressingly bland walls with ominous medical devices attached to them and the meaningless hospital informational notices, I began to wonder what would be the last thing that I would see when it was my time to go. Would those horrible walls be a precursor to the events leading to the end of my life?   I also began exploring the connection with various events preceding the operation that felt almost like a unconscious precognition of what would was to come.

I have spent most of my life trying to understand the things that I have seen.  My first images that I can remember is that of me following my father from a dark room to a lit one.  I have always been fascinated by images and have spent thousands of hours looking at them and pouring a part of myself into them as I explored other places that were profoundly different then my own.

I came to realize that one day, I would see one last image, take one last photo and then I would be gone.  What would that be?

We remember so much about our lives through the images we store up in our minds.  They fill us with emotions and remembered sensations of events from our past.  They make up so much of who we are because those memories inform us and influence us in how we conduct ourselves in the future.  It has been so much of a part of my life that I have turned that fascination into a profession that has fed me and my family in more ways then one.

One day, there will be one last picture that I will take.  I hope that it has some meaning to someone beyond myself.

Looking for Rosemarie


Ronnies is looking for information about her mother Rosemarie, who lived near Tiffany Park during the 60’s,  70’s. until her murder in 1982.  The story is not all that different then what we all have experience ourselves within our own families or of those of our friends and the pain is one that we will always carry to the end of our lives.

If you can help her out and find people who knew her mom, let  me or Ronnies know.

I’ll update this with more information as I get it.



I hope all is well.

I am writing you because I see you have so many pictures from the South Bronx mainly Fox St.

I was wondering if by any chance you knew my mother Rosemarie.

She was murdered March of 1982.

She lived on Fox St. in the building between handball courts and the school on Fox (The park’s name is Tiffany.) Her husband at the time was Julio, she also had a son by him.

Her sister Gladys died of AIDS a few years after her death.

Her brother Papo was also murdered in the late 1980’s to early 90’s

I am just trying to find out anything about my mom, people who knew her and might have a story or two to tell. I was not raised with her, she gave me to my dad when I was born. I do not have many memories with her as I saw her very rarely.

Thank you in advance for accepting my email and helping in anyway you can.

God Bless




( I asked for more information and some clarification, this is her reply.)

From what I’m told (and it’s not much) before she and my dad met she was dating Frankenstein from the Savage Skulls.

I was born in 1973 That’s when the picture of her and dad was taken that was their wedding night.

Papo’s real name was Jose not sure if he shared the same last name as my mom.

Her mother does still live there but will not tell me anything.

Gladys, her sister, was known as India and her Husband Indio.

My mom’s close friend name I believe was Raymond Rios aka T.M.

This is information that I found when my mother police report of her death was finally released to after 2 years of going back and forth with FOIL a program in NYS that releases records to family members but does block out names.

Thanks Again,