ANDREI IKIESCU, SHORTLISTED 3RD EDITION OF THE BIENNIAL’S GRANT
I feel like a little boy in a toy store when I’m sitting in front of a barber shop. I’ve been in many
barbershops on many streets around the world, and each time I had the same strange feeling of
stepping into another dimension.
The barbershop is a masculine place. The barbershop is a unique place for men to socialize.
A barber does not need too many special effects to set up his tiny universe. In Varanasi, on the bank of
the holy Ganges River, a chair and a fabric canopy was everything a barber needed to create his magic
place. In Portugal, the barbershop is where soccer fans gather. In Turkey or Palestine it's a place where
one can have a cup of tea and a relaxed chat with a perfect stranger. In Katmandu they fulfilling their
“mission” in the little crossroad markets, between temples and stalls. On a side street in Stockholm I
found "Barber & Books" an extraordinary combination of a classic barbershop and bookstore.
"Barbershop" is an ongoing project that started unexpectedly during a 2006 trip to Cuba. Ever since,
wherever I traveled, I followed this subject, asking people and doing research as much as was possible.
With time I realized that, the barbershop mean much more than a place where people come to fix their
beards. It is a part of the community culture's quintessence; it’s about people life, about the very
nature of the human spirit.
Over the last 12 years I sought to learn more about the barbershop in terms of historical, social and
cultural aspects. As wide it is as a subject, as neglected I discover it to be. Based on the many hours
chatters I made with owners of such shops, I would like to put together a book about the phenomenon.
It will be one of the very few on the subject.