“You know that shirt that says ‘Detroit hustles harder’? The city of Detroit has a dilapidated, broken down image, and, culturally, ‘hustling’ is affiliated with the gangster lifestyle. But living in proximity to the city, I’ve gained a more profound understanding of the word and what it means that Detroit hustles harder: hustling is about the willingness to sustain the struggle of life, the determination to continue.”
In 1960, Garanger, a 25-year-old draftee who had already been photographing professionally for ten years, landed in Kabylia, in the small village of Ain Terzine, about seventy-five miles south of Algiers. Garanger’s commanding officer decreed that the villagers must have identity cards: “Naturally he asked the military photographer to make these cards,” Garanger recalls. “Either I refused and went to prison, or I accepted.
“I would come within three feet of them,” Garanger remembers. “They would be unveiled. In a period of ten days, I made two thousand portraits, two hundred a day. The women had no choice in the matter. Their only way of protesting was through their look.”