Collaborations in Cabo Verde by AJ Paris ajparisphotos

Collaborations in Cabo Verde

Cabo Verde is a very unique country!

“Do you see that?” asks Andreio.

It is lunchtime, not long after one in the afternoon. We have been walking around all morning, in this historic town of Cidade Velha, which in Portuguese means “Old City”––an indication that the place has been around for a long time. Although I’m enjoying myself, I’m hungry and a bit cranky.

Both my fault, since I decided (and forced Andreio) to wait for fish in the city for late lunch.

“What?” I reply to Andreio.

Andreio and I have been shooting all over the island for the past couple of weeks. I have been photographing him and he has been really good with me, patiently showing me things like this scene.

“Look,” he says, pointing.

That is when I see it…

Young boys helping a boat out of the water.

This kind of scene has been following me all over the island. Cabo Verdeans are very collaborative. They work together in everything they do. I constantly find myself thinking that they are relaxed in a way I don’t see in many other African cultures.

It is not uncommon to find people playing ouri, a popular board game known to the rest of the world as mancala.

You might think to yourself, “What does a board game have to do with kids pulling a boat out of the water?”

For me, it is the same spirit of collaboration.

AJ Paris is a photographer and travels all over the world. His photo books include Men Around the World, Rio, and Banaras. Shop by visiting

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